Friday, 3 June 2011

Have you ever heard someone older telling you a story or life lesson and saying it's because they speak from experience?

It is something that I've noticed to be happening to me- I seem to be at that period where I begin to smile at the innocence of youth, the feeling of not having anything to worry about, of not needing to think about the future and what lies ahead. 

I laughed at that. I'm mean, I know. 

I know, I know. It can only mean one thing- I'm getting older. Honestly it scares me. I wonder how I'll look like as a 40 year old. As a 60 year old. As an 80 year old if I live that long (yes, I'm vain). 

Just yesterday when talking to a friend about back in the days when we were prefects in the afternoon session, I brushed off what happened as youthful innocence and immaturity. Then it hit me. I no longer associate myself as a teen. I see myself as older, more experienced, more mature (or I like to think so, anyway), and (hopefully!) more knowledgeable. 

Sunny Melbourne... Won't be seeing that for a few months!

It is laughable, really. It reminds me of the stories I used to read of magical worlds with immortals (seeing how vain I am, the idea of immortality is very appealing). They mingle with mortals, and marvel at the ignorance of these people. If they're diabolical, they might even take advantage of it because they're also more powerful. But that's the case, isn't it? To me, some teens seem immature and downright ignorant. Sometimes it annoys me. Other times it makes me nostalgic. 

Can you imagine the amount of experience our parents have? And our grandparents? 

It is one of those things that we absorb throughout our daily life, without knowing it. But sometimes it's a nice feeling, knowing that you have this wealth of experience to draw on to help you. 

I've always wondered what it would be like to go back to my high school as a student ever since I left high school and watched the movie where Drew Barrymore went undercover as a high school student to write a story (she's a journalist). How would that second time turn out? Would I be able to use experience to anticipate which topics will be asked in exams? If I attempted to apply for prefects again, would knowing what it's like sitting on the other side help me? 

Youthful innocence?

To any social scientists who might be reading this, here's an idea! I wouldn't mind going back to my high school as an experiment (hopefully with one or two friends). 

Wouldn't it be fascinating? 

Anyway, it seems that I'm now old enough to be able to give advice based on 'experience'. Isn't that weird! I've never seen myself as an older figure; I was always the young kid, the protected and sheltered one who received advice. Guess it's like the passing of the torch (except I've no one to pass the torch to), from one generation to another. 

Now to digress yet again. A lot of you know about the whole 'we belong to Gen Y' thing. I recently discovered these authors, who (according to Wikipedia) proposed:

Modern history repeats itself every four generations; approximately 80–100 years.

The first one, the High cycle, occurs when a new order or human expansion is developed, replacing the older one. The next cycle is called the Awakening. More spiritual than the previous, this is a time of rebellion against the already established order. The third cycle is known as the Unraveling, when elements of individualism and fragmentation take over society, developing a troubled era which leads directly to the Fourth Turning, an era of crisis dominating society during which a redefinition of its very structure, goals, and purposes is established.

Each cycle has its archetypes, the four having the following one defined as: Prophet, Nomad, Hero, and Artist. Millennials (that's another term for Gen Y) belong to the Hero category, featuring a deep trust in authority and institutions; being somewhat conventional, but still powerful. They grew up during an Unraveling cycle with more protections than the previous generation (Gen X). They are heavily dependent on team work, and thus, when they come of age, turn into the heroic team-working young people of a Crisis. In their middle years, they become the energetic, decisive, and strong leaders of a High cycle; and in old age, they become the criticized powerful elders of an Awakening cycle. Another previous generation that belongs to this category is The Greatest Generation (1916–1924).

So that's another 'passing of the torch' instance. Just like how now, I am growing out of my teenage years (I've but a few months left before I'm officially an adult), as I watch people younger than me grow up and go through things that I went through.

My young cousins and my teen self... they're still young, whereas I'm no longer a teen.. in a few months that is

It does make me nostalgic to think about the times when I was in their position, and that I can never reclaim it again unless someone creates a time-travelling machine right now. And I will begin to grow up, enter adulthood, and begin telling people 'I speak from experience when I say...'

I just hope that I'm the adult that people look up to and want to take advice from.
Different Themes
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  1. EeLyn says:

    I want to be the friend who's going back to high school for an experiment! =D But if it's ever going to happen, are you sure we won't look too old? haha (though i realise most teens nowadays look pretty matured).

    With my bro in form 5 now, I've been speaking A LOT from experience! As an older sibling perhaps. You as the youngest sibling don't have someone younger for you to experience the feeling of an 'experienced grownup' - at home I mean. Ahah!

    Lastly, I'm taking this entry of yours as the one you mentioned last night - our topical blogging piece - right? So I'll be writing soon.

  2. Athena says:

    eelyn: LOL sometimes JR is the grownup at home, really!

    Boy: Honestly though, I don't remember saying 'I speak from experience...' to you wor... Got ah? HAHAHA, this one must ask mama.

  3. EeLyn says:

    Ce(haha): Actually same here, my bro's the grownup at home because I act pretty kiddish at home. hehe. but he doesn't speak form experience! =D

  4. Jerrenn says:

    Hahahah I don't think we'll look too old at all... nothing a haircut and school uniforms can't mend (for now anyway!)

    I'm the grownup at home too, right? =)