The Missing Switch

I guess I always figured there would be some sort of magical switch.

 

In kindergarten I figured it would be when I was a big, tall fifth grader. In fifth grade I figured it would be the following year in middle school. In middle school I was sure it was the next stepping stone, high school. High school came and went but it had to be in college.

 

I’m out of college and finally forced to accept that people don’t magically grow up as they age. There is no switch to flip, no puff of smoke that leaves you wiser instead of just older.

 

And of course, I kind of knew. I had my suspicions when my dad told me to squeeze the toothpaste out of the tube a certain way. I had my suspicions when my mom donated my favorite blanky.

 

But now there’s absolutely no denying it. Because I have a kid and I still am a kid. What does that give us? A whole world full of kids trying to raise kids.

 

No wonder we have so many problems.

 

Course, I don’t think anyone can truly prepare for children. But if raising a family is my goal in life, my one priority, and I’m this unprepared, where does that leave the people less fortunate, the people who haven’t had the luxury of the direct guidance I have? It a scary thought, thinking about where I’d be without real love.

 

Overpopulation seems like a joke when faced with a colicky newborn. We really can’t get enough of these little buggers, eh? I mean, how do people DO this and how can we learn to do it better? Seems almost insurmountable at times.

 

You gotta love the “almost.”

 

Seems to me the switch is impossible without guidance. Let me be honest; it’s more of a gradual progression than a switch. But in all the physics and philosophy I studied, in all the classics I read and shows I watched, I never learned how to grow up. Let me honest; I did learn a thing or two about growing up from some science fiction TV shows, but that’s about it. Schools don’t teach you how to resolve conflict and parents don’t teach you how to love. File those under “Things We Should Fix if We Ever Get Around to it,” because let’s face it: there’s never going to be a switch. Time doesn’t solve everything on it’s on.

 

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