“Grow up!” and “Act mature!” are phrases often used during a time we call adolescence. Adolescence is a span in a person’s life when they are expected to transform from a child into an adult, however, the two are entirely different beings with different habits and personalities. Such a dramatic change doesn’t just take place overnight. During those long years a person is unaffectionately called a teenager. Some of the best and worst moments in life are found here.
This change is not always beneficial, and at times, one would rather not be an adult. Childhood is a time of innocence and fun, where after school your mom says, “Go outside and play,” and you do just that. You and your friends breathe deep of life and do whatever your heart desires. Your parents supply all your needs, emotional and financial, and the demands on you are few. This is a time of learning and exploration, where the simple things in life are all you know. The questions you have, your parents are able to answer and the days happily fly by.
Not so with adolescence. Nature has a cruel and forceful way of causing a person to grow older even though they still want to play after school. The games have changed, from hide-and-go-seek to snowboarding. Not to mention your games cost a lot more. But you still want to play, that for sure hasn’t changed. Yet, somehow, your free time seems to be disappearing. There is less and less time for doing the things you want. As if that’s not bad enough, it’s being replaced with things you don’t want to do. Afternoon play time is replaced with tons of homework; peace of mind is replaced with responsibilities. Also, parents are unable to answer some of the questions that pop up. Unfortunately, these question are life-changing, and can only be answered by you and God. Speaking of God, you can’t ride on mom and dad anymore, you have to develop your own relationship with Him.
Petty details such as hair and clothing seem to bother you more and add to the pressure. You want to be accepted by more people than just your parents. The world is bigger than you had thought, and you are much smaller. Last, but certainly not least, girls become more than friends.
Now compare childhood and adulthood. One might ask if that is a fair trade. (Answer: It sure doesn’t seem like it). Many teenagers, including myself, would like to keep a happy medium. I can’t wait to be able to drive, but I want to go out and play with my friends. Unfortunately you can’t play that game long. God didn’t give humans much choice on whether they want to grow up, but he did give them a choice on whether they want to mature.
Adolescence is a time of exchanging the old for the new, and at times trying to keep them both. As parents and adults, you just have to bear with us and poke us along when we sit down and don’t want to move.