Grow Up Already

         For years, I’ve felt reluctant to grow up. All of my birthdays have been sad, because I just keep growing older. I cried when I got my period for the first time. And second. And third. I knew that was a significant mark of womanhood, and I wanted nothing more than to stay out of it. I cried the first time my Mom made me wear a bra. Though I have not worn one in three years, my boobs have grown and I still feel scared when I think about it. I quit my first job since it made me uncomfortable simply because I could not believe I was old enough to have one. I still haven’t had my first real kiss and I would never think about going to a high school party. Although it took me a long time, I realize I have a huge fear of growing up.

          It’s not that I even had an amazing childhood that anyone would miss, but I just can’t seem to let go of it. Maybe I feel as though it COULD’VE been better, or it SHOULD’VE been better. I need to accept the fact that I cannot change it. Spending all of my time hoping and wishing I was raised in a different area or family wastes my time thinking about what I am doing right in this moment.

          A lot of my childhood, I was obsessed with teenagers. When I’d go to the mall, I’d see the sixteen-year old boy and girl holding hands and smiling. I saw the group of girls holding 25 shopping bags collectively, whispering about the hot topic in their group. They always seemed so much older than me. Actually, they still feel so much older than me. Everyone my age has been through so much more than I have and I feel so behind and lonely. I feel like it’s time to stop obsessing over teenagers and the way they act (and calling them ‘they’ like I am not one myself). I need to experience things, kiss people, get a job, and do more than just sit in my room reading a book all day. I’m anxious and I don’t know where to begin.

         I guess I just wrote this essay to make myself feel vulnerable and hopefully discover I am not alone. I’m not sure how exactly to grow up, but I think it starts by living in the present rather than the past, or even the future. I’m always in a rush, but I never stop to think what I’m doing. I need to stop trying to make things happen and accept that they will happen if they are meant to. I’m hoping 2018 is an actual fresh start, for me and everyone else reading this that feels lost. May you stick with your resolutions and prosper in every way you can. I love you. (This world needs more love.)

All the love,

Shelby

 

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