The Adventure of Growing Up

When I was little, I never had much trouble adjusting to a new age. But as I get older, it’s been getting much harder. Over the weekend I turned 17. And I’m still staring at that number trying to believe that it’s true.

I feel old, and I’m sure there are many of you laughing and shaking your heads right now, but it’s true!! I never wanted to grow up. In my mind I’m still eight. And of course little me knew this would happen one day, but she never really believed it.

I spent the last couple weeks in denial, and claiming I was going to run away to Neverland. Thinking this like Wait, I’m turning 17? How can I be turning 17?!? That’s crazy!! I don’t want to be 17 yet!!! I’m running away now!!!”

And I suppose some people my age can’t wait to grow up, dreaming of all the things they could do once they’re old enough, but that’s not me. I liked being little.

Sure, there are perks to maturing, having more life experiences that you grow from, and have eventually having your our life and family. But at the moment I’m enjoying being a kid, and yes, I still consider myself a kid.

It’s insane to think that in a year, less than a year even, I’ll be 18 and technically an….. “adult” Of course that’s just a title and doesn’t really change much about me as a person. But still, it’s the principle of the matter. I had gotten used to being 16, it was strange, but I was fine with it. But being 17…. I was having a hard time coping with that. Until, I figured something out.

On the morning of the 14 when I had to say goodbye to being 16 forever, I was mopping around and lamenting to my friend. But he said something that helped me get a new prospective on this whole thing. I had asked him to convince me what was good about being 17, and he said “Well one of the good things about being 17 is that this is what God has planned for your life.” Of course I had to agree with him, and if I looked at it that way, it made the age change a little more bearable. But not only that, but it made me realize I could look at this a an adventure.

Bilbo Baggins never asked for a bunch of dwarfs and a wizard to invade his home and sweep him along on their quest. And I never asked to be 17. But a great story and change came from his peaceful little comfort zone being broken, so perhaps if I take the same attitude and accept the changes as they come, something as spectacular could happen to me. Albert in a less life threatening way.

Because I’m not sure I’m quite ready for facing down a dragon yet. Although Bilbo probably wasn’t either, but he did it anyway, along with many other daring deeds. So maybe I should take a cue from him, and call this life an adventure and face it with all the courage, strength, and patience I can muster, and pray for more when I fall short.

Perhaps racing around on a horse on a hunter pace, then spending all evening at a friend’s birthday party, then embarrassing myself immensely in front of strangers the next day with the crazy scavenger hunt I had for my party, then recovering from all the craziness, activities and a bit of a head cold by laying in bed til 2pm today, is a good way to start off my seventeenth year. But who knows. I do know that time is not going to wait for me, and although I am in no rush to grow up, and almost reluctant, as long as I look at it as a challenge to be concurred, I should be okay. After all:

An adventure is an inconvenience rightly considered, and an inconvenience is an adventure wrongly considered.

-G. K. Chesterton


8 thoughts on “The Adventure of Growing Up

  1. You know, while I was certainly interested in growing up… I had almost exactly the same reaction. Sixteen had been such a goal age for me that the very thought of seventeen just unnerved me. There wasn’t anything awful about being seventeen, in fact it was a very good year, but I know how you feel. It was this step away from childhood and toward the strange vast future of adulthood. But you want to know a secret? Everyone is a child, some people just don’t like admitting it.

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