Fairy tales make us believe that everything is possible. Their main quote is the following: never grow up! But in real life things are a little bit different and evolve, sometimes, even without our own willing. Moreover, we don’t have a magic spell or a fairy godmother, and to say the least, a gold fish to fulfill 3 wishes of ours. So, outside the story frame we encounter both good and bad, but the happy ending isn’t always prescribed. To get to the point of this article, letting go of the “fairy tale”, and by fairy tale, I don’t necessarily refer to its childish substance, but to its whole package of meanings: little by age, naivety, simplicity, irresponsibility, freedom we step into the real world and pass to the next chapter in life: maturity.
The transition of maturity is a process we all are going through, sooner or later, depending on a lot of terms and social parental parameters. Education holds the big role but, in the end, it is up to us to decide when and how we will start.
For me, the last few months have proved to be very demanding, in terms of life choices and changes. I’ve reached the age of 20 and the first level in the transition of maturity . I got to live certain experiences that have shown me what is behind the curtain and where I stand at this point in my life. I did two internships and now I have a job. I am an editor at both a local newspaper and an online magazine, I am also a blogger and I want to pursue a career in journalism. But I will not make this piece entirely about my choices. I want to discus about the concept of maturity and add a little intervention of my own self, guiding you through some of my own stories, thoughts and revelations.
The child inside me holds me back, begs me not to go, but my mind is constantly pushing me in front of the line: Grow up! It whispers, saying : you can’t go back now, be what you were meant to be, just be! Those are a few words of my daily consternation basis. I deal with them at every round of plan making and emotional intervention, whether we are talking about love or friendship.
Since I can remember, when I settle at something or I target a certain goal or aspiration, I put my mind to it until I succeed in obtaining it. Now, things appear from a different perspective: after I receive compliments about my work, about my writing and when I see how people interpret what I do and what I say, professionally speaking, I get enthusiastic but, at the same time, scared. It rises to my mind: is that me, am I really there? Am I really seeing and debating certain subjects, that in the past, were unknown or not even noticed by me? How come I never saw this and that and never thought of it?
So, I tend to take “a step back”, I feel the insecurity inside my mind and soul, I reflect a lot on the situation and I ask myself a lot of questions, how is this possible, why and how can I become better in order to be more in control? And then I realize, you can never be in control. Wishes and visionary outlook aren’t sufficient. Work, work, work, dedication, a lot of passion, and, most important, sacrifices. That type of sacrifices which I heard a lot about when a was a little kid. Therefore, I start little by little making them and what a receive isn’t always a pleasant surprise, like the fact that there will be people willing to give up on you or whom you’ll lose along the way. Therefore, what certain decisions appeared to be taken so far when I was young, now, there are more present than ever and playing against the clock.
The funny thing occurs when I see how people treat me differently. Some people expect to see more from me, since I am 20 years old, and sometimes I’m even called by “lady”. Those are the moments when I detach from myself, I look at me from the outside and analyse. But there are also other people who manage to see deep inside me and still refer to me as to a young one. Therefore, for some reason, it starts to be a little confusing for me and hard, at the same time, to learn to know every person and what every person expects from you and to know how to handle the situation and how to behave, like a teenager or an adult, or both?
Responsibilities and hard tasks I’m ready to take, but the effects and the entire process are sometimes hard to digest. Especially when you see how others are behaving and you start ,again, asking yourself some questions: am I moving too fast or too slow? So many questions, so little time. Like Frank Zappa would say: “so many books, so little time”. Another element which strongly interferes now and didn’t bother me that much before, unfortunately: the books. I can see how discussions are played now by other rules, are implying knowledge, information and things we are supposed to learn progressively, by stepping out of the scholarly context and exploring more, wanting to know more.
All in all, I think maturity means final decisions and trustful reliance. Once you’ve given your word, you cannot go back, without a strong support to excuse your negligence. You cannot adopt anymore the “excuse”, as you used in the past, like” she is little, please forgive her, she doesn’t know the way around”. By this, I don’t imply that excuses are out of the market or discussion, not at all, but certain verbal escapes must now be treated in a more tactful way, with more precision and attention, otherwise, you won’t be taken seriously and people won’t trust you.
For all of the above, that is way I feel, sometimes, like I am taking two steps ahead and one behind. I embrace the transition of maturity , but I leave a little treat for me at the door, I let my expressions and feelings sometimes, to run wild and free, to be less sloppy, I let them out. More precisely, i can’t entirely stop my childish emotions and reactions in front of the adulthood, I jump around, from time to time, with my smile and innocence, but not for too long. The other half of me steps in again before I even noticed its absence: Wake up, grow up, get a job or do something.