As a child, I once decided never to grow up, just like Peter Pan. But now I’m sure I don’t want to be like Peter Pan. And that doesn’t even contradict my childhood wish.
Picture credit: fonafona @depositphotos.com
The desire not to grow up
A central theme with Peter Pan is the desire to never grow up. That’s exactly what I wanted as a child: to not grow up. For me, adults have always been the ones who had little to no time to play. The ones who were always worried. The ones who always “had to” do so much and were somehow always driven by duties that they apparently didn’t enjoy. I wanted to keep playing and having fun. Doing the whole thing “that just has to be” different and deal with worries somehow differently. I didn’t think about the how to do it, it was just a wish.
What’s cool about being an adult
What I didn’t understand as a child was that as an adult you have the responsibilities and the complete power to make decisions. This not only brings stress, worries, duties and a lack of time, but is also brings a way to reduce that. I can make decisions. I can decisions for or against anything. I have power that I (mostly) didn’t have as a child. I can use this power as I see fit.
It is not a contradiction to be both an adult and a “child”
…because how much fun and games I have in life is largely my decision. This is a decision I get to make as an adult. I can decide how much I “must” do (honestly, that’s damn little) and what I voluntarily take on myself. As soon as I assess what my responsibilities are, I see that many of the so-called duties are self-imposed and are thus conscious decisions of mine. This gives me the freedom to decide differently, or to make it clear to myself that something else is important to me. Thus, it becomes less a compulsion from the outside, and more a decision of its own. This also gives me the freedom to decide how much play or fun I want to have in my life. In my case: a lot! I have an incredible amount of fun playing. That’s probably why I’m a dedicated role player.
Did you also think about growing up as a child? If so, how did you see it back then? And what do you think about it today?