When you’re 16…
Why do all my titles sound like songs in my head, this one from The Sound of Music. Anyway the daily post What did my life look like at 16? Well I lived with my grandparents, so I was in between generations, but they were very lenient with me, maybe too much freedom. I was a good student, I could have been better if I wasn’t socializing so much. I wore head to toe J.Crew or Gap, that was my thing, my preppy thing and I prided myself in never wearing the same thing twice (my parents were always giving me cash and trying to make up for neglecting me as a child and I was more than happy to take it). I had a car and I read like crazy, I still do. I had a steady boyfriend that year, his name was Mark. I thought we’d be together forever, but don’t you always at that age! I had a super close best friend and two other really close best friends. We did everything together. In my mind I was going to college, going to be with Mark forever. I was going to be a broadcast journalist, no kids and travel the world. I would always be skinny. I thought I’d have loads of money, would hardly ever come back to my hometown, and would have a big house where I would entertain people. I always wanted a sunny eat in kitchen, with an orange juice carafe. I don’t know what it was about that. In my mind that was living. I could not wait for freedom, I wanted to be old, in college, able to go out and do cool things in the city. I think many 16 year old girls in small towns in the early 90’s felt the same way.
Is my life like that now? No, not even close. Mark and I were done at the end of the school year. I went to college, but not for broadcast journalism. I have not been that skinny since I was 22 years old. I don’t have a picket fence, a Volvo or a Benz (which was in my vision), my home does not have a sunny breakfast nook, I still don’t own a carafe and I am the worst entertainer ever- I try to never have to have people over. I left home and moved overseas but I did come back, I came back to take care of my grandparents. I have two kids which is a total surprise and I was the first of my friends to do so. I am no longer friends with my super close best friend but my two close best friends are my youngest child’s God Mothers. I don’t dress really cool, my kids are getting older and I am trying to get back to looking nice, but it’s hard.
Even though my life is not the expectations and dreams of my sixteen year old self, I am happy. It is good, there were so many unexpected changes and adventures I would have never imagined. All adults are not wealthy, even if you work really hard. Yes I can go out to the city and stay up late, but there are bills to pay and other worries about my childrens safety and this crazy world we live in. I stopped going to church back then, but came back and I am very active in my faith. Life is never what you think or plan and that is a hard lesson for someone like me (type A control freak) to swallow, but it is lovely. It’s lovelier than I could have imagined. I didn’t realize that nothing in the world is as amazing as someone calling you mama and loving on you. So I miss sleeping in at 16 and eating whatever I pleased but other than that, I am happy where I am now, all these years later.