I’m (legally) an adult now. This realization comes to me after having been 18 for two months. How strange and slow my mind works at times! I have always been told that the coming of age bears with it the burden, or blessing, of responsibility. For me, an opportunity to exercise any new capacity for change is a Godsend. Enough with the soft hands and gentle treatment, the cooing of others as they guide me away from failure and defeat, the moments of feeling so incapable of bringing about change.
And yet some people see all of this as a burden. Heaven forbid being thrust out into the great unknown, having to take the first feeble steps away from home and away from all that has become so dull and familiar. They look behind their shoulders as they grow more confident in their steps, missing opportunities in the process of watching for the reassuring smiles of old friends. These same people remain unaware of good fortune as they meet it. They do not extend their hands in warm welcome to the promise of change and of breaking free from perfect stride. Damn it all, I say. Tear it all away, burn it down and clear away the ashes.
I live for change and I welcome responsibility, knowing that I will see it to good use. Every opportunity is a world itself that is tugging at its restraints, wanting to be unleashed and to be marveled at. Responsibility is one of the keys to freedom. It releases the shackles of a growth limited by others. It makes malleable the aged fibers that build up the weary image of a man. If we shy away from responsibility, leaving it instead to the hands of others that we deem more capable than ourselves, we have led to our own undoing. Only by assuming responsibility for our own actions can we ensure our continued growth.
I bring this up because I am shocked at how weak some people are. The majority of my peers have reached the milestone age of 18, yet they continue to act as if not a day has gone by since they were expelled from the womb and onto the already crowded face of this earth. So many of these ‘young adults’ are incapable of bringing themselves to ignore their own whims for a moment in search for meaning, or to stop to think as individuals. Their notion of responsibility is to appear free of blame, even if it is necessary to shed it upon another. Deadlines that have been long-established are lost in the cataclysmic voids of their wasted minds, filtered out like background noise – along with this they throw out knowledge of anything beyond the weekend’s upcoming party or the price of a beer at the closest nightclub. Individualism is lost in favor of uniformity; thought is suppressed and lost in a drunken daze brought about by the overbearing need to conform.
So what? Stay on top of things and take a look around. You cannot continue burying your head in the sand when trouble begins to brew, nor can you ignore the inevitable.
Times change and the circumstances of a situation are rarely the same. You are born and you must live until you die.
Make it a good life.