Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Is this adulthood?

I am in-between times… hmmm…perhaps it is more accurate to say that I feel like I am in-between places. 

I no longer feel like I used to and am not quite ‘there’ at that new place yet. I think am becoming a new person, an updated and more mature version of me, but I am yet to be certain, yet to feel complete and comfortable in this new ‘skin’. I am not really sure what is happening or how long it may take…but strangely enough I somehow trust in the process and am waiting it out. l do feel a little like I am waiting at a station for a bus that never seems to arrive, but I am strangely confident that it’s only a matter of time.

I don’t seem to know much do I? Well, that’s not entirely true… I do know that I am slightly restless and wonder when this will end... I do know that old behaviours are waning.  I know that I no longer feel dependant on the approval of my peers. I know that I feel more my own person. I know that I am more self-reliant than I have ever been. I know that I am happier and more content. I know that I recognise my own value more and... I wonder if this adulthood?

 I think the tell-tale sign for me that I am now emerging as an adult is that where I once felt like I was special and destined for greatness… now I recognise that while I am special, we all are. We all bring something different and wonderful to this life and to each other. None of us are to be singled out as being any more special or destined for more greatness than any other and that includes myself.  I recognise that the people that I have felt honoured to have met in my life, have been those who were humble and down to earth. Their honesty and openness has shown me my folly, shown me the burden that was my pride. I reflect upon the child that was I, and in casting off the shackles of my ego I allow myself to grow into my potential. I realise that it was never meant to be all about me … Ahh!!!  This is it!!! The eureka moment!! I think back to Piaget, developmental psychology and the stages of childhood development… and whilst I am rusty (very rusty) on his theories… there was something about the development of toddlers and children, moving from ego-centricity to being able to understand the world through another’s eyes or perspective… except now I am finally moving on from the egocentrism of a young adult and now experience (rather than see) things through the lives of others. I am less judgemental, more patient and accepting of that which is.  I am more grateful for what is and for what may be. I also realise that if we want to live in a better world, we need to create it, slowly and tenderly. This means doing things for others, even though we may not be seen to benefit from it. Why?, why not! We need more kindness and altruism in this world. We need to model these things for others foreign to such concepts or for those who may have forgotten them, and in doing so we show them/remind them of an alternative.

Is this being responsible? Is this adulthood? Yes! Like the butterfly that emerges from the cocoon, after living life as a voracious caterpillar, consuming everything it could, I think I am finally emerging as an adult from my own cocoon of self-centeredness. Finally understanding the complexity of it all and how contradiction can sit comfortably within. I understand more fully that without sacrifice we cannot have that which we want or need. I understand now that it is sometimes not enough to simply dream, and that sometimes you need to ‘do’.  But most importantly, I am slowly recognising that each of us has our own path to make and that no path is any more right or wrong than any other.

The key to me realising that I am becoming an adult is the understanding and acceptance that it is not so much what others are doing that matters, but what I am doing and how this affects others.

I think I have grown up.

As a footnote I want to mention that as I typed these thoughts I realised the music flowing from the speakers and into my room as Explosions in the sky’s lp “The earth is not a cold dead place”. A double lp consisting of three sides of music and the 4th side being etched vinyl with the words -the earth is not a cold dead place because you are breathing, because you are listening. This is written as a sentence that never ends and never stops inspiring. I breathe in and listen to the world which is, and I sigh contently for right now I am filled with love and hope. 

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