While our mums and dads are busy trying to look young again and regain that youthful glow, we teenagers are trying hard to do the exact opposite. What the adults are trying to get back, we are carelessly throwing away. We put on make-up, go to parties, smoke and drink; we do all this because it’s what grown-ups do and the way we see it, at 16, we already are. But we’re not. We’re almost adults, but not yet. We are stuck in the middle, and yet, we constantly try to prove that we are no longer children and that we have already grown up. The feeling of being incompetent, the need for more freedom and the pressure to do well; these are the origin of our desire to grow up. But are these reasons significant enough to want to quickly abandon our childhood and become adults? Are we not growing up too fast? Remember when we were young and we couldn’t wait till we were grown up? We wanted to put on make-up like how we watched our mums do and dress-up in beautiful clothes to look pretty. We spent our childhood dreaming of what we could do when we grow up that now that we’re almost completely there; we’re stuck because we don’t know what we actually want to do. Back when we were still children, we knew what we wanted to do when we grew up; it was much easier because when we were still children, what we wanted to do when we grew up was to put on make-up, wear jewelleries and go to parties, just like how the adults did. But now, we can’t make up our mind on what to do because now, we understand that there is so much more that we need to consider.
We’ve been so captivated with the idea of being a grown up ever since childhood that we painted this perfect little picture in our head of what it’ll be like when we do eventually grow up that now that we’re on our way to adulthood, we’re overwhelmed by how much responsibilities it actually takes. We’re just now finding out that being ‘grown up’ isn’t as fun as the idea of growing up. At the moment, we are at a stage where the only thing we can do is study hard. We have yet to acquire the necessary skills we need to achieve our goals and we don’t have the diplomas and the certificates that prove that we have accomplished the required skills. Right now, we are incompetent and right now, we are at the most important year of high school because our grades this year will help decide what university we go to. We’re at a point where, if we want to succeed, we have to move forward and grow up because that is the only way. We hurry because we want to achieve our goals quickly and feel secure and because we want the stage where we’re all confused and scared of what will happen next to be over. But isn’t being confused and scared the most thrilling part of growing up? Because that’s the stage where we make the most mistakes and that’s where we learn the most important lessons that’ll help us in the future. Instead of hurrying, we should just take our time and experience the last few years of our youth. We are still at an age where we can still watch Disney movies and get away with it, where we can make as many mistakes as we want and use the excuse of ‘Hey, we’re just teenagers.’ Don’t rush into adulthood and grow up too quickly because if you’re gonna screw up, do it while you’re young.
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Older you get; the harder it is to bounce back. When we were young, questions of what we wanted to be when we grew up was common but our answers were never taken too seriously because, really, a princess? But now, we are asked this question twice as often and we are expected to have a definite answer. At our age, we are expected to already know what we want to be and to know how to achieve our goal. We are going to be making the hardest decisions and we must choose the right choices because our answers will affect our future. But do you remember when the hardest decision we had to make was which flavour of ice cream we wanted? Why do we want to run away from our childhood and into adulthood? When we grow up, we won’t have time to goof around and just chill. We’d be too busy with our job that, for a lot of people, doesn’t provide anything other than money. Most of us are probably going to take a course that we know we’re good at, something that we know we can easily do and some of us probably already have planned out their future and that’s good. Most of us want to graduate already and go away to college. To live in another city, to move out, to be away from our nagging parents and annoying siblings but right now, we’re still living at home and we’re still learning.
We’re still able to eat meals cooked by our mums; we’re still being nagged to do our chores and are continuously told to put the music down. Don’t get impatient and rush to grow up, because once you grow up, all the annoying and nagging done by your family will be gone and even though you might deny it now, you’ll find yourself missing it. Right now, we should, at the same time, both focus on our studies but also have fun. We still remember what it’s like to be a kid but we’ve also learned how to behave from the adults. We can both act mature when we interact with adults and act immature when we’re with children because even though we’re past being kids and are not yet adults, we can still connect to those younger than us and older than us because we are happily stuck in the middle. So don’t rush the process of growing up. We’ll get there eventually.