Young At Heart

Young At Heart

What are your thoughts on aging? How will you stay young at heart as you get older?

I saw this prompt yesterday but wanted to sleep on it before deciding if I wanted to write something or not. Plus it was Dortmund day and I was a little tired from having watched eight hours of football back to back. Not to mention the fact that my initial thoughts on the matter would have resulted too much in a kind of feeling sorry for myself post. The reason for that being I was ruing the fact there was no-one here to play football with. It’s not something I’m particularly concerned with, I don’t have to worry about how I’m going to stay young at heart. It’s the opposite problem I’m worried about, that of growing up at all. I’m a grown up now, my ID card says so. I’ve been to a see an eighteen rated film, I’ve drunk beer, I make most of my own decisions and yet I don’t feel like a grown up. Which is most probably because I’m not, not really.

But that’s not necessarily a bad thing, or what I even want. Or maybe I’ve been looking at it all wrong. Surely I could be a responsible grown up in other ways but one who still collects stickers and whatever else it is I end up collecting in the future. Surely I can be a grown up who takes care of themselves, goes to work every day and yet comes home to their bat cave and ignores the outside world completely. And walls of said bat cave are covered in Jogi and Hansi cards, pictures of Manuel Neuer and my favourite Freiburg players.

I think what my point is I’m always measuring myself by other people’s standards which is quite pointless really. I’ve never fit into any of their neat little boxes before, why would I now? Growing up means different things to different people.

On a somewhat related note there’s a scene from a documentary series in my head. It’s called Young, Autistic and Stagestruck and as the title suggests it’s about a group of autistic people doing a stage production together. One of them is a boy named Andrew, he’s in his late teens. They showed him at home with his parents when he was opening his birthday presents. His mother wanted him to have driving lessons like his younger brother, from what I can gather she was a little upset that she was still buying her teenage son children’s books for his birthday. I get that she’s worried about what will happen to him, that he may not be able to live by himself but why can’t he have children’s books for his birthday. Why does being a year older have to dictate what you read or how you spend your spare time?

If I’d written this yesterday thinking of that scene would have made me wonder if anyone feels that way about me, if they’d rather not be buying me football stickers or whatever else it is they consider childish. Now I’m thinking so what if they do, it doesn’t matter. After all they don’t have to even buy me anything at all, I wouldn’t mind if they chose not to. If they really have a problem with it they should just not buy me anything. Or they could do the decent thing and just not judge other people’s interests.

When it comes to things like this people, including myself don’t make a lot of sense. When kids are young they just want to grow up, but their parents sometimes wish they could keep them little forever. Kids are in such a hurry to grow up but when they do part of them wishes they could go back, I know I sometimes feel that way. I kind of feel that way right now. Half of me wants to be a kid that can spend all day playing football and not have to worry about anything else. And yet the other half of me wants to grow up a little more and a little faster. It doesn’t make much sense but then when do people ever make sense.

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