Nothing is worse than growing up. That is something we can all agree on. We don’t want to have to let go of being careless, and grasp the nature of what we truly care about. We don’t want to be told what to care about, and we are also tired of having to deal with the reality of what it means to be a grown up.
Or at least I don’t anyway. Now looking back on it, I can fully understand why it is teens have such a negative persona about growing up. I was first diagnosed with clinical depression at age 14. It felt funny naming my rather panicked insomnia, but I never would’ve classified myself as depressed. Then again, you never know what depression truly is until it is inside you. From that point on, it all was a blur. I entered public high school as an anarchist and left an adversary. Not to God himself, but to my own personal moralities. My Holy Grail was the education system, because what it meant to me was a chance to be the best. This pressure grew over me at a young age, and was the main reason why I became so obsessed with getting into University. Not because I wanted to be accepted, but because I wanted to be good enough to accept myself.
My dream since I was a little girl was to attend Brown University, the ever so prestigious, and study psych or something. I worked extremely hard in school to get there, and at times merely drowned in pressure, only to find out that this dream was scarier and realer than reality itself. Even now, I think of studying psych and kind of chuckle. I had merely no interest in becoming a psych professor, and really didn’t know what all the fancy labels would do for me… besides make me feel validated. Without labels in life, flowers are just weeds no one cares about and blood is just blood. The most daunting pressure of all came from myself, as I would spend most of my time studying for SATS, and practicing writing. I lost most of my friends through the process, and became almost addicted to my own standards, and soon those weren’t even good enough. The 92 could’ve been higher, I could’ve studied longer, etc. etc. I was an unrecognizable mess, and stopped eating, sleeping and taking care of myself properly. It became unhealthy, and I barely had enough energy to look for happiness, so I resisted it. Then I got actually rejected from Brown, I thought my life was over.
Rejection utterly sucked, and it felt like just another person who thought I wasn’t good enough. I wasn’t good enough but truthfully I never will be. The world will never have peace, people will never be fully fed and I will never be good enough. Storms will never stop happening, wars will never disappear and there will never be a panacea for pure health. People will die and I will still not be good enough. Cancer will triple in size, and our population will slowly decrease and I’ll still feel not good enough. Cures will disappear under a table and hate crimes will still root from the same old hate. We won’t ever make it to Jupiter or whatever planet seems good enough, and grass will always lack it’s fading green. Happiness won’t ever be bought and there will always be a newer, faster and down right better car you don’t own. The boy won’t ever be the one of your dreams, and the cheating husband won’t ever turn pure. Couples therapy definitely won’t help… Cheating isn’t psychological. There will always be a she, who walks nicer and has better hair. She will always be skinnier, and better at whatever it is. You won’t ever get 100% on your test that’s you’re so worried about and you will always fail once or twice. You will always dream of prettier cities, and pray for something else. The people over there will always seem happier and their friends more supportive. School won’t ever be easy, and school will always be taken for granted. You will always wonder “what if” and daydream about something far away.
Depression was weird because you care for it like it’s a pet. You feed it, take it with you, and sleep with it and one day it just sort-of runs away.
The hardest part is opening your mind and accepting all that life has given you. We all deal with rejection and if I had learned to broaden perspective rather feel sorry for myself; it would’ve saved me a couple tears. I decided to redirect my ambition to attend University to a new direction. I studied art, and the history of it, and it compelled me to view life more preciously. I studied artists like Degas, and wrote about the morals and philosophy beyond what is painted on the canvas. This led me to really search for beauty in things that seemed plain. I loved the passion that artists had for their work, and their ability to combine science, politics and literature all in one. This then inspired me to study the most modern art form of all; fashion. I noticed quickly that I was more passionate about this than anything else, and I made time for myself throughout studying- instead of hiding away. This directed me to the London College of Fashion, where I will be attending come September. I can truly say I never thought that I would go to a University to study fashion. I was always so afraid of limiting myself. This was until I felt for the first time in my life, my refrain from resisting happiness. If only I was more honest with myself when I first began my quest for adulthood I wouldn’t have struggled merely as much.
The most important perspective I had to chance was the one I had on the definition of being a student. Students are the ones who have the voice to influence a nation. We hold the key to the uncut truths because you adults at the New York Times are too sophisticated for rawness.
We investigate while you watch from a window. We are the journalists who dig and discover, or the interns who sweat blood and tears for the sake of something more meaningful than a pay-check. We are students and we know how to learn. We are still open minded, and the best part is we are all lost. We all don’t know who we want to be, and we all aren’t stuck in some lame routine. We walk into bars, showrooms and clubs open to new opportunities. We don’t shut down and we definitely don’t turn away from the things we struggle with. We live to find adventure, and know more about modern society because we built it. So I may not be qualified or not quite ready for your fancy University- but I’ve learned to accept it. I would much rather be real than branded. Just remember me as the one who is not quite ready, because I won’t ever be ready. And unlike most adults, I’m not going to pretend I am. So yes I won’t ever be good enough, but I’m learning to coax with it.