“Back in the days when I was young, I’m not a kid anymore, but some days I wish I was a kid again…”
Do you recall that Ahmad song that had him reminiscing about ‘85, doing homework, yo’ momma jokes, and tootsie pops? When I first heard that joint, it was merely a fun catchy rap, I didn’t think much of it. “Being a kid sucks”, I said to myself, as I sat there listening sometime in my pre-teen age. Oh boy, little did I know I’d come to miss those days so dearly.
Every time I get together with my girls we end up reminiscing on the past. We are only 23, yet we always end that topic of conversation with, “those were the days” as we take a big sigh.
What do I miss about being a younger me? Well, about 10 things that I’m sure just about every young adult and middle-aged individual can coincide with.
1. School being the only thing to worry about
Getting homework done was my only responsibility. There was no work to worry about besides that which was assigned by a teacher, and that only took about an hour or less out of my life. Now, we have the stress of balancing so many aspects of life. Work, social-life, love-life, college, all of these things make your head want to explode at times. Can I just go back to worrying about how I am going to remember this Pythagorean theorem for the upcoming test? Thank You.
2. “Liking” someone (or simple love)
Answering the big question, “So do you “like” him or “like-like” him?”. I miss having a crush on someone and it being so pure. I miss the idea of love not being tainted. I miss that “teenage love that didn’t feel no hurt yet”, as MF would put it. Love was so full of innocence, at least for me at that time, I can’t speak on behalf of everyone because I hear some of the stories some of you all have and I have to ask myself, “Where the hell were your parents at?”.
I miss staying after school just to talk and walk around campus with that one boy. Sitting in the field during lunch, under a tree, sharing a pair of headphones just so I could show him the songs I had in my MP3 player.
Damn, I almost shed a tear recalling that moment right there.
3. Having Saturdays and Sundays off
Let’s add having evenings off as well into the mix. Not all of us get the luxury of having a Monday-Friday job that consists of a 9am-5pm shift, and even if we do, let headline one remind you that you are constantly at work in your adult life. From work you might be headed to school, gym, picking up the kids, among countless other responsibilities we hold. Saturdays were all about Cartoons and Cereal. Which leads me into the third thing I miss.
4. Cartoons and Cereal
Eating cereal while watching cartoons was just so gratifying. I’d say it’s the equivalent to what we feel now during happy hour. Nickelodeon, The WB (from 3pm-5pm and Saturdays), and Disney Channel were everything to me. I must confess, I had an obsession with Fruity Pebbles and Fruit Loops.
5. Myspace being the only form of social media
Everything was so much simpler back then. Your profile depicted exactly who you were by the pictures/quotes you would post, the songs in your music player, and the layout you chose. You could easily inform yourself of where you stood in people’s lives according to the order they had you in on their top friends list. Now, I have to keep up with you all on Tumblr, Instagam, Twitter, Facebook, Vine, Snapchat, and whatever other apps that are out there. You guys are making my battery life die quicker switching in between all these apps, c’mon!
6. Seeing friends everyday
As we exited our Senior year in high school and acquired responsibilities, and so-on and so-forth, we began to drift apart. There’s people I haven’t hanged out with in years that I would love to simply pick up where we left off, but things and times change with age and it’s not always possible.
I miss knowing I’m going to walk into Math class everyday at 11:15am and that so-and-so will be sitting to my right and we will be passing notes with the latest gossip or cracking a joke about the teacher or someone in the room. We tend to live that now with our “new” friends at the workplace, while we merely see our “day-ones” once or twice a week for an hour or two before it’s back to reality.
7. Not worrying about the future
Reaching adult life seemed like an eternal wait. BOOM! One day it suddenly hit. I don’t know about you but time seems to be moving pretty fast. I worry myself sometimes, I’m 23 and I’m worrying sometimes thinking about all these things: when will I reach my career goals, when will I get married, who will I get married to, when will I have children, when am I buying a house. I think about how I don’t want to be an old mom and how I want to be a successful career-oriented woman and worrying about reaching all of this before I’m 30. I mean time is ticking here, I’m only 7 years away!
Okay, maybe I need not worry, it’s not like I‘m 30 still living at mom‘s house and partying every Thursday-Sunday unable to maintain a healthy relationship (low-jab at someone I used to know, haha), but damn I miss the days where passing English honors and getting the boy I liked to know that I liked him were the only things that occupied my mind.
Maybe we are back to number one on this list. But it’s true, a large chunk of young-adult life is spent worrying about the uncertainty of life itself. At least for those of us who have aspirations.
8. Christmas and Birthday gifts
I don’t know about you, but my number of gifts on Christmas day and Birthdays began to decline the moment I turned 17. I’m still trying to figure out whether I don’t get as excited for Christmas and Birthdays because of the lack of surprise gifts or simply because it is just simply what happens as you grow older, the fun and excitement of those days have just ran dry.
Don’t get me wrong, I love the time spent with family and friends on these days but wouldn’t you agree that Christmas was far more exciting at the age of 10?
It was the one holiday I looked forward to all year round. Now, it’s just like “Oh, Christmas is a week away…let’s break out the shopping list”, while my pockets prepare to scream.
9. Mom’s cooking
My mother used to cook for us everyday right before leaving to work. Sometimes, my brother and I would get home from school and not eat her food because we would rather stop by the pizza store or any fast food place on the way home.
As we got older my mom stopped cooking for us. Now, she only cooks on her days off. The other five days out of the week we come home to a full fridge and stove-top that suggests that if we want a home-cooked meal then we ought to make it ourselves. I guess that’s what we get for all those times we threw away mom’s spaghetti down the sink before she got home from work, just so that we could make it seem like we actually ate her food.
Mom, you are the best cook. Just thought I would let you know now.
10. Playing Outside
“Mom, can I go play outside? Pleeeeeeeeease”
, and the instant she said “Okay” you ran out the door before she could add a “but”. Playing outside with the neighborhood kids was so much fun. Hide-and-seek and tag was so thrilling. Writing on the sidewalk with chalk was so cool to me. We used to be able to keep ourselves entertained and happy with the simplest things back then.
11. Being a Careless Junk Food Junkie
I miss eating junk food without a care in the world. Everyday, during recess in elementary school about four girls and I would share a big bag of Hot-Cheetos. On the way home from school, we would stop by the 7-Eleven and get a slurpee and maybe another bag of chips or a piece of chocolate. It isn’t until you hit high school and realize what all of that junk does to you that you begin to say “no” to those things. I mean after all, I am trying to look good in these back-to-school outfits, duh.
Don’t get me wrong, I have days where I’ll have a big bag of chips and say I’m only going to eat a hand-size portion and next thing you know I’m scavenging on the last bit of crumbs left at the bottom of the bag. It is then that I say to myself as I grab my tummy, “F***! I f***** up”. It literally weighs on me heavy after the fact, just knowing that at some point I have to go work it off at the gym. I could have avoided that whole situation hadn’t I ate that bag. Sighs.
Well, there you have it. What do you miss about being a younger you?