And We just Wanted To Grow Up

And We just Wanted To Grow Up

You are worth it.
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Soda becomes vodka. Bikes turn into cars. Kisses turn into sex. Remember when the tallest place in the world was on your dad’s shoulders? When your mom was your hero? When getting high meant swinging on the playground? When protection meant strapping on a helmet? When the worst thing boys could give girls were cooties? Your worst enemies used to be your siblings. Heartbreak was when you got your toys taken away for not finishing your vegetables. Race issues were about who ran the fastest. War was only a board game. When you didn’t care how you looked on your way to school and your momma picked out your outfits. The only drug you took was cough medicine. Your butterflies came from your crush. Back when wearing a skirt didn’t label you a slut. When the most pain you felt was skinning your knee. When goodbyes only meant until tomorrow.

When you were young.

But we just couldn’t wait to grow up.

Growing up is not all it is cracked up to be.

We think that it will mean independence, love, happiness, but at what cost? We are so blinded by this concept to figure things out on our own that we forget to breathe. And in this great big process of trying to grow up and become independent, we forget to take care of ourselves. We avoid our issues. Health becomes a foreign concept, happiness comes in and out of its cave, and people do not want to admit they are not okay.

It is okay, to not be okay.

It is okay to ask for help.

It is okay to not know why you are the way you are.

It is such a destructive feeling which overpowers you and you just cannot control.

Girls blame hormones, boys blame the world, parents blame the people their kids associate with.

Why do we do this to ourselves? Why do we hate ourselves and try to change who we are? Why do we go through these crazy up’s and down’s in life where we lose control of what our purpose is?

We all go through those phases where we look back and think about how much we have changed. The life experiences we go through will in a way force you to change no matter how much you rebel and avoid the inevitable. We are in a generation, overpopulated, overanalyzed, overwhelmed with all its options, yet we are so underloved, underappreciated, and alone. We cry out for help and feel like no one can hear us, like really hear us.

There are days where we just want to be left alone and days where we want everyone to fly to our rescue and tell us what to do, as we proceed to avoid their “words of wisdom”. Nobody has all the answers. I always thought my dad was the smartest man I know, and to this day I adore him, but while I say that, I never really understood his inner conflicts until I opened my eyes and my heart.

You see we are very alike in the sense that I always try to be one step ahead, one step stronger and faster.

We both like to take control and enjoy being in charge. We both understand the realistic side of life where money can’t buy happiness, but the only way to find happiness is to have a stable income. To be able to provide for those around us and know they are taken care of. He worked like a slob throughout my childhood, and I always wondered why doesn’t he just take a break, why doesn’t he stop working we have enough? Then I found myself realizing I was doing the same thing to myself and asking myself why. The answer is that we never have enough… and this isn’t just regarding possessions, it is regarding our internal struggles.

People like me will tend to focus on everything else so that they can avoid their own battles. I personally have the maternal instinct of my mom, where I try to take care of everyone else’s problems, everyone else’s drama. I make sure others are ready for whatever lies ahead and always stand in the back saying if you fall I will catch you, if you burn I will protect you, if you need me, I will be there. And that is my curse. I created this version of myself where I neglect my self-worth and my mental health by protecting everyone else where I am falling, burning, and losing my need to be happy. I don’t regret it, believe me I am happy to help others, but as I got the motherly advice from a one Jodie Brownd, “If you can’t take care of yourself, you have absolutely no business taking care of anyone else.” She was absolutely correct.

It breaks my heart seeing people in distress, people feeling worthless and neglected.

People always asked me why I have such a broad variety of types of friends, and my answer is always, everyone is going through something and everyone needs someone to believe in them. I strongly believe in overcoming obstacles and taking control of your life, of your choices, of your future, and in the power of prayer. I believe that there will always be a better tomorrow if we take charge of our attitude today. I wake up every morning, take a deep breath, look in the mirror, and say “today will be a great day”. No matter my mood, no matter what happened yesterday. I could be bawling my eyes out like a baby and still will find myself saying “today will be a great day” because if you say it, and truly mean it, the universe will follow through and bring your positive mindset to meet a positive energy which will make it impossible to stop you.

Everything happens for a reason and the battles we face will determine how much stronger we will come out after.

You are powerful, you are beautiful, you are loved, you are capable, you can do anything. There is no limit when you truly and deeply want something as long as you possess three ideal qualities and exemplify them on a daily basis. Honesty, love, and appreciation. You cut out the toxic people who pull you down, you radiate a glow of achieving the impossible, you stop making excuses, you love yourself and you just do it. With every pulse in your heart, with every breathe in your lungs, with every stubborn mentality you have gained. You do it. And I promise, it will get better, and you will always be worth it.

Cover Image Credit: Nico Ray

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50 Things To Be Happy About

It's the little things in life.
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It is always easier to pick out the negatives in life. We tend to dwell on them and drown out the happy moments. I asked a friend to tell me something that made them happy. They sarcastically laughed at my question then thought about it for a minute. Nothing. But they could easily come up with things that made them unhappy. Then I read them my list, and they were smiling and laughing in agreement the whole time. There are so many more things to be happy and laugh about than we realize. After all- it's the little things in life that can mean the most! Here are 50 things that make me happy. What are your 50?

  1. The first warm day of the year
  2. Laughing so hard your abs ache
  3. Freshly washed sheets
  4. Looking through old pictures
  5. The smell of a coffee shop
  6. Eating cookie dough
  7. Reading a bible verse that perfectly fits your current situation
  8. Seeing someone open a gift you got them
  9. Eating birthday cake
  10. A shower after a long day
  11. Marking something off your to-do list
  12. Drinking ice cold water on a really hot day
  13. Dressing up for no reason
  14. Breakfast food
  15. Being able to lay in bed in the morning
  16. Finding something you love at the store
  17. And it’s on sale
  18. Cute elderly couples
  19. When a stranger compliments you
  20. Getting butterflies in your stomach
  21. Taking a nap
  22. Cooking something delicious
  23. Being lost for words
  24. Receiving a birthday card in the mail
  25. And there's money in it
  26. Finally cleaning your room
  27. Realizing how fortunate you are
  28. Waking up from a nightmare and realizing it wasn't real
  29. Fresh fruit
  30. Walking barefoot in the grass
  31. Singing along to a song in the car
  32. Sunrises
  33. Sunsets
  34. Freshly baked cookies with a glass of milk
  35. Summertime cookouts
  36. Feeling pretty
  37. Looking forward to something
  38. Lemonade
  39. Comfortable silences
  40. Waking up in the middle of the night and realizing you have more time to sleep
  41. Surviving another school year
  42. The cold side of the pillow
  43. The smell of popcorn
  44. Remembering something funny that happened
  45. Laughing to yourself about it
  46. Feeling weird about laughing to yourself
  47. Printed photographs
  48. Wearing a new outfit
  49. The sound of an ice cream truck
  50. Feeling confident
Cover Image Credit: Tumblr

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The Selflessness Of Self-Care

It is OK to nurture yourself before nurturing others.

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Do you find yourself prioritizing taking care of others before taking care of yourself? I do.

Let me introduce myself. My name is Saiarchana, and I am a nurturer. Nurturing people is something that has almost become second-nature to me because I am so accustomed to doing it. I love uplifting others and being there to give them support when they are in need. I love giving support to others so much that I am even majoring in Psychology. Nurturing is something that is incredibly important to me. I nurture others because I don't want anyone to feel alone or unsupported.

But, sometimes I forget to nurture myself.

I used to believe that taking care of others involved sacrifice. This kind of sacrifice was my own energy and self-care. I lived under the belief that by pulling away and taking care of myself, I would be labeled as selfish. So, I kept on nurturing others around me.

Until I broke down.

I was giving so much support and care to others, that I had forgotten about me. I am also a very important person in my life. My relationship with myself is incredibly important, and I had forgotten that. I was so focused on pouring love and care to others, that I had forgotten to water myself with those same sustaining forces. I was getting drained and worn out from nurturing and giving love to so many people around me because I was neglecting myself.

When I realized what was happening, I finally understood: Love is not starvation. I do not need to starve myself in order to feed others. I do not need to neglect my self-care in order to care for and give love to the people around me. Nurturing others does not equate to neglecting myself. Because, once I neglect myself, I end up not being able to show up fully for the people in my life.

I read a quote by an influencer named Allie Michelle. Michelle said:

"Taking care of yourself is selfless. An empty well cannot give water to a village."

When I read this, it was as if my eyes developed clearer vision. I recognized that I believed that self-care was selfish when actually it is one of the most selfless things I can ever do for this world. When I am able to take care of myself, I am at a healthier and stable position to give care to others. When I give from a place of lack, I end up lacking more. Giving my energy to others when I am in desperate need of recharging my own energy will end up making me feel emptier. It is like the good analogy from Michelle's quote. I cannot give from an empty source. When I forget to give love and care to myself, I reach a point where there is nothing left to give to others, because I haven't maintained a solid foundation for myself.

Giving care to others should be a fulfilling experience, not a draining one. In order for it to be a fulfilling experience, I need to make sure I am not giving from a place of emptiness. I need to nurture myself because doing so will give me a stable foundation. So, I finally understand the key to nurturing others: making sure I am nurturing myself first.

So, what now?

I am going to continue giving love and care to others. But this time, I am going to make sure I am nurturing myself too.

I hope you nurture yourself too. You are worthy of the love and care you give to others.

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