I am the most immature adult I know when it comes to interpersonal communication. I am not ‘poised’ or ‘classy’ all the time. I do not simply shake my head at fancy statements thrown at parties. I ask why and what and often how, and live to tell the tale if my nosey questions backfire.
If I feel sad, I show it. If I am happy, you will definitely see it on my face. I can’t conceal my emotions over diplomatic tendencies like most adults do. If I don’t like you, trust me, you will know.
But having said that, I have learned to act a certain way that is acceptable in society and in formal social norms. I don’t run around fancy restaurants hiding under the tables (anymore), but I do crack jokes at the pea size of the food and the enormous platter that encompasses it.
I am a kid at heart in a world filled fill too many adults.
I had once written about how growing up tends to kill the colorful aspects of our personality, because these sudden waves of reality hit us in a way we don’t know how to handle. It’s natural to flail in the dark, especially in confusion. But it’s not fair to give a part of ourselves up because we feel the need to be accepted in ways that are considered normal.
Unfortunately, that’s what growing up is. To learn how to be mature about various things that were never in the realm of our sight before. Professionally, emotionally, all these responsibilities come at us like a wave and we barely manage to stay afloat.
At least, that’s what growing up to me felt like.
But here is the thing, what if I told you that you can grow up and not lose this part? This part that I like to call- your inner child.
I find my own ways to have fun in this dreary adult world, and so much so, that I am afraid to lose my inner child. Like, literally afraid.
Trust me when I say this but your inner child is the very essence of who you are. A happy adult, means their inner child is happy. A sad adult means you need to give your inner child new toys to play.
And I felt like I rediscovered mine recently.
I started to do more of the things that made me happy.
And that includes stealing away hours in a coffee shop and writing, coloring in mandalas, watching all these really fun Youtubers, catching up with a healthy dose of Netflix and investing more time with friends and family. It made all the difference when I did simple things that brought me joy. It harboured a hobby or passion that I developed when I was a kid. And by making time to do small things that made me happy, I realized it was just giving me a pinch of child-like optimism every day. How can you be sad when you have so many pages to color?
I taught myself to snap out of a bad mood on my own.
There was a time I used to heavily depend on someone to help snap myself out of a bad mood and cheer me up. As much as I used to feel better afterwards, I realized that the unavailability of those people not only made me co-dependent but it also just made me sulk longer, till those people were available to talk to me. Which out rightly sucked. Why can’t I teach myself not to depend on anyone to make myself happy? Why can’t I just deal with a bad day or mood by myself and learn to snap out of it quicker? And you know what? By teaching myself to cheer myself up, I discovered more ways I can make my inner child happy. Here is a hint- it includes a lot of hot chocolate.
I learned to differentiate between a good bubble and a bad bubble.
I am not going to lie, but I do tend to live in a bubble sometimes. In my perfect world, everything is nice and happy. People are kind and don’t go breaking your hearts over trivial matters. And I have to admit, I was pretty stupid to think so, let alone live in a bubble like that. There was a time I would curse myself to even think of making another bubble around myself, till I realized that not all bubbles are bad. Some bubbles protect you from people who are trying to take advantage of you and some bubbles you need to build for your own sanity. It took me a long time to learn what kind of bubbles to build and which ones to burst, and I am still learning. But one thing is for sure, we form bubbles to protect our minds and hearts for whatever the world has to throw at us. And sometimes, they aren’t a bad thing to have.
I also think there is nothing wrong with naïve.
Kids are naïve and legend has it that adults can’t afford to be so. To them I say, Hi- have you met me? I might not be the sharpest pin on the block when it comes to picking on things and to that I say, yes. I can be quite naïve. And I see nothing wrong with it. Naivety and gullibility are two different things. If you don’t know certain aspects of something, ask, explore, and discover if you want to. Don’t get lured away with people trying to take advantage of you- that’s being gullible. But not knowing something you are supposed doesn’t make you a fool. You just learn along the way and hopefully find someone who respects that.
And honestly, when I started believing in these I did notice a slight change in who I was in principal. I felt like I finally let the curly hair baby Niki in me out into the fields to play with the butterflies in her hair and her bare feet dancing in the sun. I found happiness in the things I somehow had lost interest in in the last few years.
It feels so liberating and my heart feels happier and free.
I look forward to the next chapter of books I want to read, the next episode of Gilmore Girls I watch before sleeping, the inspiring coffee shop writing sessions I incorporate into my weekends. I look forward to things that inspire, the conversations that strike a chord and doing things for the people who matter and making them happy.
The six foot me feels like she is holding hands with the six-year-old me, while she is jumping in puddles of rain, smiling.
And I don’t intend to ever let her go again.
Maybe you find the beauty in being a child,