Every so often I look in the mirror and ask myself, how am I only nineteen? Constantly I am being told I am wise beyond my years or mature for my age. Not once have I ever felt like the age I actually am, excluding from when I was a little girl. Some people question how I have gotten to be as so, or why it is that way. The real answer is I'm not so sure.

Growing up I have always been by my sister's side. I have played with her, done school work with her, and strived to be like her. We may only be four years apart but four years is a big difference in the matter of a life span. I was always with her friends and learned from her manners and mistakes. I watched how she acted and learned how to be because of her. My parents raised me of course, but my maturity may have begun by having my sister as my mentor.

My parents taught me right from wrong and everything there is to know about living and being a good person in general. From the day I was born, I was treated with love and care and saw examples of good character from all my family. To this day, I learn by example and that is what brought me to where I am now.

I began to be older than my years when I was taught by my sister how to live and do what is right. I began to be more mature when I saw how my parents acted and went about their ways. My education was at utmost importance and I was on the fast track of learning from being a teacher's daughter and granddaughter. Every other child may have been playing dress up, but I preferred to play dress up as being a teacher in a classroom. I grew as a person beyond my age when I experienced the reality of life and death more than once. When you see death at such a young age, there is no choice but to grow up and be older.

Not everyone has been brought up the way I have or been through the same experiences I have. But I can certainly say that all these have been a factor in being older and wiser than the year on my birth certificate. And then, when I try to think of everything that brought me to how I am today, there is still uncertainty. I wish I could explain to someone in a few short words as to why I act the way I do, beyond my years, older and wiser, whatever you would like to word it as such. Although one thing that I can say, is I don't disagree with anyone who labels me as so.

I have always felt older than the year asked for in D.O.B.s and paperwork. Nineteen. It sounds so young yet I feel so old. While everyone enjoys the common actualities that comes with each age, I find them already old and worn out. I have never liked to be immature, a partier, a brat, or a 'millennial' (when you think of the word). I'm the one who thinks before acting, enjoys conversations and literature, spending time with those that matter, and not perseverating on things that just don't matter when it comes down to it. I can be called the mom or the grandma and I can't fully disagree.

I know what I want to do in my future and just want to get there. It's hard to explain to people that I enjoy living in the moment, but know what I want in life and want to be able to get there and not have to wait. I'm only in my sophomore year of college and I'm ready to begin a career and become successful. I won't settle for anything, or anyone for that matter. No need to put myself through that when I know what I want and can clearly see it.

Maybe I have lived before and have already been through this life. Could that be why I feel at least a few years older than my actual age? Or maybe it is just that I grew up differently than others and have my head on right from being with such a great influencing family. All that I know is that I do feel older than what I really am and I am okay with that. It doesn't mean that I don't want to be with people my age and experience what I am supposed to at this point in life. It just is something that will always be so. I know I am not the only person that feels this way, so maybe someone else can explain it better? But for now I can say that a few words will never describe as to why I am "wise beyond my years." There simply may never be an answer to suffice it.