31 going 13

Do you remember what a rush we were in to grow up when we were younger? Wishing that we would grow that much taller, that much curvier, that much more mature. How we looked up at our elder siblings and wished for a moment, that we were all grown up and facing the world on our own.

Yet now, I wish I could turn back time and be a child again. I wish I had taken it slower and I wish I didn’t have to be all grown up and all facing the world.

Don’t you wish there were no heartbreaks to nurse, no betrayals to bear and no repercussions to deal with? Don’t you wish that if you just closed your eyes and willed it long enough, you would be 13 again and ready to step into the peak of your adolescence?

Don’t you wish the biggest worry in your life would be not bringing your Health Booklet for your yearly medical checkup? Don’t you wish that the most painful thing you go through would be your BCG? That every day you could look forward to writing little letters and which McDonalds’ to hang out in after school? That you’d have concession and travel anywhere for the same amount? That we could have jogathons, pet-a-thons, make your own things day, bring your pet to school day and even a 24 hour singathon?

I wish I wasn’t in such a hurry to grow up. That I had cherished those moments of playing at the Monkey Bar a little more. That I would have taken part in a few more plays, watched a few more cartoons, done a few more class projects, sang the anthem with a little more joy. That I hadn’t dreaded chapel that much, that I would have pulled a few more ties. That I would have appreciated 40 cents for a plate of food and having hours of endless fun.

I wish I had worried a little less about the future and cherished the present a little more. I wish I could repair old ties and mend friendships that meant so much. I wish I still had the chance to enter the bookshop and buy tiny gifts for friends that would seem to mean the world for the day. I wish I had a schoolbus auntie to make sure I reached home safely day after day. I wish I had teachers to spoonfeed me knowledge and take so much effort to make sure I didn’t go astray.

Somehow, we are always in a rush or a chase for something. We walk on travellators and run through train doors waiting to clamp down on our frames. We are so worried that we won’t make it somewhere by the end of the hour that we let that entire hour pass in anxiety. What do we have to lose by spending a little time to smell the roses? What do we have to lose by turning 13 again?

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