I’m officially resigning from adulthood. Starting today. And it seems I’m not alone.
Children really do not realize how good they have it. It’s a shame really, they spend so much time and energy wanting to grow up, and once they do, the insightful ones realize how great it was to be a kid. Unburdened. There are times I think I want to go back to those carefree, easy days. Adulthood is SO over-rated.
The truth is, growing up sucks. You have to be responsible. Practical. Have the right answers to hard questions. Tolerate unfairness. Adults have to deny our own wants (no matter how longstanding or intense) in favor of the needs of others. We go without (uncomplainingly) so they don’t. We see and sacrifice for the big picture, understand consequences, delay gratification, whether we want to or not.
Adults bear the added burden of hiding our own pain, anger or other unpleasant feeling. Oh you feel these things all right, just as sharply, as intensely as any toddler in a temper tantrum. Hard feelings don’t go away with the years, we just learn how to bury them deep, so no one can see. And while a child’s pain will be understood and comforted, an adult is offered scorn and indifference — toughen up, we’re all struggling.
Most surprising of all, I’ve never understood the childhood aversion to naps during the day. There is nothing better than snuggling in a soft place with a blanket. Let me assure all children — you’re not going to miss anything while you’re asleep, promise. You’ll take a short, sweet rest and awake to plenty of your day still to come. Unless an adult is sick or pregnant, naps are unlikely — too much to get done, too many depending on you to waste time sleeping.
Perhaps most of all, what I miss about childhood is that lack of worry. I want someone else to take on the stress of providing for us, the worry about how I’ll give my family a decent Christmas when so little is in the checkbook, or the future. I want to hand over my adult fears and stresses and responsibilities to someone bigger, stronger and smarter — let them take care of me.
Not forever mind you. Just for a little while.