Growing Up, If Only A Little

I heard the ice break outside my window. I laid up in bed and watched out the window as one hooded figure about 5 feet tall slid carefully across the ice on the sidewalk across the street. It halted at the corner, and another figure of similar height and description approached from another direction to meet them.

I watched intently. On a foggy Manhattan morning in which the city actually received its first rain of the year, I wondered if I was about to watch some kind of drug deal go down or something. Here were these two hooded figures having a conversation at length and meeting on a dimly lit street corner at 7:00 A.m. on a Friday. I wondered also, should this be some kind of drug deal, if I was signing my death certificate, as I made no attempt to hide my face. Still, having wondered this, I figured any damage or damnation was already done, and I thus continued to watch.

After about five minutes of doing this I laid back down, my curiosity satisfied after seeing nothing. Then, after about 3 minutes of daydreaming, I heard what sounded like a big truck come to a stop. I looked up, and saw a school bus. And I laughed. 🙂

When my little brother came out to visit just before the end of 2013, I had a conversation with him. At 13 years old, he told me he didn’t want to grow up because it sounded like it sucked; with bills and job commitments and that kind of thing. At the time, I tried my best to explain to him that actually it was quite worth it. There was the freedom to do whatever you wanted if you could find a way to afford it (and so long as it was legal, which I feel goes without saying), there was the freedom to choose how hard to work and how far to go with what work you did and the freedom to choose where you worked at all. There was the freedom to not stress about anything when you didn’t want to, to wake up when you wanted to (based on your other commitments of course), and the freedom to decide HOW you wanted to live. To decide to rent a place, buy a place, and to decorate or make it whatever you wanted based on that, and who to live with or whether or not to live alone. The option to choose when to go drive, where to go drive, and what to go do on your drive. For all the hassles that adult life may have and cause, I tried to explain to him that it’s completely and wonderfully worth it.

But as I laid down in bed, having seen that school bus pick up those two kids and turn down the road toward the local elementary school, I realized that all the reasons in the world were irrelevant compared to this feeling. I laid down in my queen sized bed, checked my phone, and basked in the comfort of how soft it was. I had chosen it, and I had chosen well. Getting to simply feel happy as I lay there and daydream, about winning a poetry contest or taking the girl of my dreams out on a date, was the only reason I needed to be glad I’d grown up a little.

I wish I could have just imparted that feeling upon him…

Thanks for reading…

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