An Ode to Old -- Self
My mum dug out a piece of work I wrote years back. It's titled "Countries and Continents. What is a Continent?"
Maybe I was 5 or 6. I don't remember. All I know is what this simple piece of illegible writing makes me feel now. This girl, being most definitely unfamiliar with the pen, had an awkward grip on this tool. With it, she painstakingly chalked every stroke of every letter, and in her mind, words flowed like a river; so wondrously marvellous did they click together in her head that it became a pleasing melody to which she was thoroughly immersed in. Yet on paper, they tumbled and tottered, scribblings which looked ridiculously nonsensical. But go beneath the fabric of the page and you enter the pure, untouched and innocent world this girl revelled in. To her, this was a work of art.
Never mind the mismatch of capitals and small letters, the glaring misfits of red and blue. She created this. Bursting with pride, she ticked each line of gibberish with full confidence and certitude. This was a work worthy of an A grade with five big stars. No one could have said that this piece stank because she didn't think it did. She, is me. I am she. I am she?
Fast-forward to almost 20 years later, innocence has been shattered by adolescence and adulthood. In came the deluge of self-doubt and the entrenchment of fear. The big, hot ball of "adult" mess. It takes small little moments and glimpses back into the past like this one to remind ourselves of who we were, are, and can be. To revisit these younger versions of ourselves and the golden lessons we can learn from...well, us. Kids teach us as much as we give them permission to without letting ourselves be daunted. Let's not let our "adult" lenses (which more often than not connote an erroneous sense of superiority) blind ourselves to what purity and poise can offer.