When I Grow Up…

One of the first questions an adult will ask a child upon meeting for the first time is; “so, what do you want to be when you grow up?” Perhaps this question is posed simply because it’s proven itself to be a safe and trustworthy bridge between the mutually opposing worlds of adulthood and childhood; much like Switzerland in WWII. It could also be that a sort of, masochistic curiosity drives us to draw out the dreams of the young; so that we might once again catch a glimpse of the world through their eyes, and bask in the limitless possibilities of the future; albeit vicariously.

So why am I pondering this most philosophical of questions you ask? No, I haven’t been overrun by preschoolers during the school break, but I have been confronting some of the echos from my own childhood and it’s amazing the power they still hold in my life today. The things which really impact us as kids, be they good or bad often follow us into our adult life and play a huge role in shaping the kinds of people we become. They affect the choices we make in profession, life partner, hair colour or whether the tomato sauce is stored in the fridge (yes) or in the cupboard (NO!).

I am no exception to the rule and my tender years were marked, by both the gentle nourishment of encouragement and also by the bruising hand of rejection . Still I grew into a reasonably well adjusted and law abiding member of society, I just find it difficult to map exactly when that transition took place. It seems that one day I was racing my sister to the letterbox in the hopes of a surprise letter addressed to me, and the next I am dragging my feet on the same journey only to discover that  all of the letters are addressed to me and I ain’t celebrating! I have become a grown up.

But what does that mean? Have I reached my destination? Is my life today the zenith of all of those childhood imaginings? I have to say, if that were true; my young self would be pretty miffed with me today. No, I think I’ll look at the eventuation of my adult self as simply another opportunity to consider what I want for my life and who I choose to be in it. Choice. It always comes down to choice. Keep living out the echo of a childhood identity, or stand up empowered, confident and informed about myself? I choose the latter. To live a life happy in my own skin, excited about new opportunities, surrounded by an amazing family and blessed with the best kind of friends; I think that is the kind ‘grown up’ I always wanted to be. What about you?


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Michelle Burgess
    Jul 10, 2010 @ 06:27:47

    When I was 30 I had a breakdown (not a real one but I did go a bit crazy for about 6 months) because it finally hit me that I was an adult and had to be “responsbile”. By that stage I already had two children so I’m not sure why this started to concern me when I was 30. After 6 months I got over because I realised life is one big journey and I just keep moving from one thing to the next as they feel right.

    Ps.. Sauce DEFINITELY goes in the cupboard!


  2. Brenda
    Jul 23, 2010 @ 06:49:07

    ‘To live a life happy in my own skin,’…Yes to that!


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