As I am often reflecting on my past, I think about the days of when I was a teenager. Some of the most menial tasks and simple things were the mysteries of adulthood that I wanted to partake in. I used to imagine how I would be as an adult when I was a teenager. Now as I look back I reminisce the days when I was a teenager.
1. When I was in my teenage years I was up to date with all the latest songs.
I knew all the lyrics, I watched the music videos, and knew the dance moves. I knew a lot about the latest gossip on singers and celebrities. I would listen to songs that were popular, even if I didn’t really like them.
Now, any new song I hear on the radio, I immediately shut it off. I don’t simply like a song because it is new. I actually have the ability to think a song is not good enough. New music to me are songs that I never heard. It could be a song from the 90’s but to me it is a brand new song. I could care less about celebrities, and singers. Most of the lyrics have been easy to listen to or are not complex enough.
2. I used to want to keep up with the latest fashion trends.
The style in my school was having gel in the hair, making it look wet and curly. Students wore popular brand name sneakers (Uptowns, Jordan’s, Converses…etc). It was all about hip-hop styles that celebrities wore. The color of your shirt matched with the color of your sneakers, and having 5-10 pairs of sneakers was very cool and totally normal.
Now I can wear the same jeans everyday and no one will notice. By the way, I am a girl. I haven’t worn sneakers up until now that spring is here. I have been wearing the same sneakers for 6 years. In the winter it’s a giant coat and boots, so having style seems pointless.
3. I was into junk food a lot when I was younger.
Any chance to get a bag of chips, soda, and candy was a real struggle. It was a delicacy to have around at home. My mother would always “forget” whenever I would tell her to get me something that was of junk food related. Then later I would hear about how unhealthy it all was.
Well, now I am the one saying how unhealthy all these delicacies are. I have so much access to it, yet I rarely go down the junk food isle. Especially, when you have gained weight it’s not easy, and especially when you need cheap food. Oh and the fact it finishes way quicker, which only makes you want more.
4. Alcohol was like a magical drink.
This special liquid that I could never have, but always wanted. I really had a fascination with martini glasses, and wine glasses. I would try to know the name of popular drinks and try an attempt to get the drinks when I was young (I failed of course).
But now, alcohol is everywhere. Sometimes it is even free. After you have done the whole binge drinking and getting drunk phase, the after math is not so pretty. You learn less is more. The fancy drinks are alright. And alcohol is not as sweet and fruity as I thought. Oh, and no one ever teaches about hangover, that it would be like a slug rolling in a bucket of salt.
5. Money was scarce, it kind of still is?
But I was able to save better. I would not have money and I would be carefree. I was able to save the random allowances my parents gave when feeling generous, and forget I had it.
Now as soon as I get some money it disappears, the real magic trick that makes you sad. All you do is touch the money and poof it’s gone!
6. The thought of working was super cool.
Getting a job seemed a dream come true, even if it was just being a cashier at McDonalds. Even though it was minimum wage pay (I would just buy shirts, candy, and sneakers…) it was all I needed.
Now, after having a degree and being qualified to have a good paying job, it still doesn’t help in getting a job. To get a job is alright, yet dealing with annoying bosses, then the pay is equivalent to minimum wage.
7. Being popular or fitting in was just so important, I didn’t know why.
Socializing and being known was something I thought would be fun.
Now, I hate people. I avoid going out (being broke). I only need a minimum of four friends to socialize and have fun. I’d rather be weird or nerdy now. Being popular in college is not as great as being smart.
8. Love, boys, sex, it was all so; “Oh la la!”
Love was magical; boys were so cool, especially when watching movies like: She’s All That, Princess Diaries, American Pie, Riding in Cars with Boys, Boy Meets World… etc. All you wanted was make out sessions, a cute boyfriend, and to cuddle all the time.
Now, more than half of my friends from middle school, high school, and family friends are married. Some even have children. The only relationship I have is with my cat. Love is insanity, and considered as commitment. There is a concept called dating. The reality that one date is not enough to find the perfect guy, really makes you hate all those movies. Plus, dating is so much more awkward in real life. There are so many rules and guidelines that I would need to write a new article just on dating.
9. When I was a teen, I had this imaginary idea of what I would look and be like as an adult.
I thought I would have an amazing job, and have an amazing apartment somewhere in New York City. I would have all the cool clothes; I would look hot, and have the perfect guy. I would day-dream about my amazing black infinity car, which I would drive in. Life was perfect in my mind.
I really wish I didn’t have such high hopes for myself. I don’t have a car yet. I have gained some weight. I definitely don’t have a guy, or apartment. But at the same time I don’t want all of that anymore. I live somewhat near New York City (8 hours away). My perspective has changed a lot about myself. I definitely wouldn’t mind the apartment and car. Alright, I would still love it all. But I had no idea what job I had, or what college I went to, or if I did go to college at all. I didn’t even know what college really was.
10. Holidays were so great and special all the time.
Christmas was the best, with all the snow, and lights, and sparkly trees. Schools were cancelled. Santa Clause was so cool in all those movies and cartoons. The best part was getting gifts from friends and family. It was also a caring and loving time of the year. Then for Halloween getting to wear costumes and eating all that candy. For New Years, I didn’t think of all the goals I had to achieve, there were no worries, and I was so carefree about the future. Valentine’s Day was just that, free chocolates, hearts, and being single was normal and wanted by parents. No one in school cared about not having someone. I was so young, that it was the last thing I thought about.
Now, Christmas is just a time to spend a lot of money. I learned how people wait for Black Friday to buy gifts. The concept of Black Friday is even more insane. Santa Clause doesn’t even exist. Winter sucks when you have school no matter how bad the weather gets. I do still love Christmas lights. No gifts, since I learned I don’t even celebrate Christmas. Halloween is trying to stay warm in really cold weather in odd costumes. Trick or treating is no more. New Years is a reminder of how little I have accomplished in life. Valentine’s Day is a reminder of how single I am. My parents pressure me to find someone. Need I say more?
11. When I was young I always wanted to sign stuff.
I tried to create my signature and yet never got to use it. I wanted to be like an adult and fill out applications. It could have been a post card but I still wanted to fill it out.
Now, I hate applications. It is such a long process. My signature has gone from being all loops and fancy, to just a scribble. Then there is the fact that most applications are online and no signature is even needed. Any application gives me anxiety, especially since the process is much longer than it used to be.
12. I had a lot of time on my hands.
I used to draw, I would read books for fun, and I wrote poetry just because. I would dance, create games, ride my bike, play basketball, or even sleep. I had so much time, with nowhere to go. The world was my oyster.
Now, I dread just for a few more minutes of sleep. I sleep late. I read only when I have to. I can’t even remember the last time I rode a bike. If I am doing nothing, it’s because I am procrastinating, or abandoning my work all together.
If you liked this article, and have similar experiences, please share some of your conceptions of adult life when you were teens.