“One of the oddest things about being grown-up was looking back at something you thought you knew and finding out the truth of it was completely different from what you had always believed.”
― Patricia Briggs,
Those were the days which I remember recalling as “when I was young”, when all I looked forward to, was to ‘grow up’.
Growing up meant being able to do so many things independently, foreseeing myself as a young, eligible and educated young lady who made her parents proud and owned a badge of being respectable and a well-to-do financially independent.
But as the years have been slipping by and priorities have been constantly evolving, ‘growing up’ has always arrived with its newer and most updated concepts. When sometimes its about earning the paycheck and being able to go shop the most dearly yearned stuffs or the desired modes of comfort and technology, its also about not being able enough to enjoy them with complete eternity, like it was when a merely priced candy surprise did “when I was younger”. At times, when I feel confident about being strongly capable to look after the needs of my parents and loved ones,‘growing up’ does not allow me the time and seldom, the likewise, refreshed energy to sit beside them and genuinely ask a simple question of “how are you?”, besides the courtesy of a well raised child.
“Parents rarely let go of their children, so children let go of them. They move on. They move away. The moments that used to define them – a mother’s approval, a father’s nod – are covered by moments of their own accomplishments. It is not until much later, as the skin sags and the heart weakens, that children understand; their stories, and all their accomplishments, sit atop the stories of their mothers and fathers, stones upon stones, beneath the waters of their lives.”
― Mitch Albom,
Family and friends who played an integral part of the ‘growing up’ become hard to find time for. More so they now turn into a sectional column of our lives tagged as the ‘easy vital excuses.’ Elements of occasion that used to be planned for over days, no matter how simple they were, turned out to be memories of a grand celebration. Well, now as a ‘grown up’, a planning for a celebration that would be warm and memorable is certainly a grand task, for it is like the ‘never enough’ a rare occasion that we end up being surrounded by all our people or at least the special few who would be treasures for our memory. The craze for almost anything and everything that seemed to be a visionary goal over the years vanishes like the frozen yogurt being relished, sitting by the beach side.
To one of my strangest but truest confrontation is while we have been craving to reach out to the other end, we have been equally trying to make ends meet to continue to keep us looking forever young, may be through clothes, a hair-do or scheduled salon visits, diets and fitness activities that prevent ageing and while we have been actually cherishing the fruits under that flowering tree of life, we have been busy onlooking the other side of the ‘forbidden horizon’.
So much changes since the time from ‘when we were young’ to when we are in the manufacturing process towards the time lap of being ‘the grown up’ . Having to choose between people and company that you love, setting priorities as per situations and not as per desires make me want to go travel back in time and never wanting to have the hullabaloo of the hype of this juncture. Even till date, clothes that belong to ‘those’ simpler days are so much like an aromatic nostalgia that I never skip the thought that, ” I wish, if I could still fit into some of those”, non fancy stationary in a rusted geometry box, amateurish drawings without an approach for perspective or horizon seems more appealing than bold strokes of sketches that I make today. Each time I begin or think to cook, the happy neurons of my cognitive memory reminds me of the distinctive taste of the most appetizing and palatable preparations that my mother used to make and persuades me to bring about a successful attempt and if I happen to strike the somewhat right cord, you are probably then looking at one of the proudest daughter in the Milky Way.
Even while catching up with old friends, the filed of discussion pertaining to a job or acquired luxurious of life turns out as last zone for encounter and all that goes on is reminiscing those happier simpler days when we craved to be “grownups”.
Well these are about the looking back on the happy and uncomplicated phases. With the onset of the long awaited wisdom and maturity, is also the torment and discomfort for now we also learn to acknowledge how we have been capable of bruising and blemishing the existence that belongs to someone else, for us to reach the epitome of the tower, where being “grownups” is the most strategic subject of all. And not having those for forever, with whom we started this journey sounds like the worst part of the deal to me.
So precisely what we learn from around and within about “growing up”, in a nutshell, is about first being educated, then choosing a career path that fulfills the education and contributes to the civilized society, being an eligible for marriage ( for all that it may or should include), having children and spreading the inherited and modified value system and in return, carry all these years that encompass and requires to immolate, within us, is a process that turns out to be better called as growing old instead of ‘growing up’. But no matter however it is, in the end we all still love being lost in fables and fairy tales.