Just the other day, I’d scrounged up some old photo albums and spent a good hour laughing at the younger me depicted in them. They were silly, ordinary and showed me a time that I had almost forgotten. I also noticed that the younger I was in those photos, the more often I smiled. This led me to think about the ‘good old days’ and to ponder the question of aging. People have mentioned that, as a child, they wanted to quickly become an adult so they can do more things, or the opposite – wanting to be a child again, because life was that much more simple back then.
Personally, I’ve always stuck with wanting to remain as a child. Even back when I was still a child myself, I believe that I had always thought so, because being an adult seemed way too much responsibility. Now, I find that I still think so. As you grow up, you learn all those little not-so-good things about life that you are blissfully ignorant of as a child (I say that with the privilege of having grown up in a first world country) and it starts to become harder to find things to enjoy and appreciate. For example, I can no longer spend an entire day at the park and feel that I’ve had the time of my life.
Although I appreciate growing up and getting older as much as the next person – there are things in life, interesting things, depressing things, that one can’t learn except through growing, and there are experiences that I wouldn’t give up for the world – still, I couldn’t help but to consider what would be the best age. Is it when you’re young and the world is as big and as small as you want it to be? Or is it when you’re older, when you can look back with a smile and still look forward? Is it when you’re old, sitting by the fire, and you remember all those things you’ve done or wish you’ve done?
Looking at those pictures, I decided after much deliberation that my favourite age (out of all the ones I’ve experienced, limited as that is) would have to be at about two or three. Any older and I began to notice those little negative things about society, and started to get those feelings of helplessness – knowing, but being unable to do anything about it.
As they say, ‘ignorance is bliss’ after all.