View Full Version : Growing up

Silent Knight
2005-Mar-09, 05:25 AM
Certain parts of life seem different to me now. Maybe it is part of the growing up syndrome. There is an amusement park near my house and it was fun. A few summers ago I worked there and it was a different perspective. I think most of the time people don't realize what workers experience. The customers just try to get as much out of it as they can without really acknowledging the employees. I also worked at a food processing warehouse last summer and I realized that most people probably don't know the process of how their food is made and goes to the grocery store. Grocery stores used to be fun to go to. Now I buy things and the feeling is gone. I realize that products are made for the profits. Customer benefit is a side effect. They use different branding and marketing techniques so you'll buy the product.

I really loved Christmas when I was younger. Last Christmas I was walking through a toy aisle looking at things for my nephew and it just wasn't fun. I guess there was too much commercialism involved. It just seems like most things are really bland and not as fun as you think when you are a child or you don't know how things really work. Experiences just donít seem as exciting anymore. Perhaps this is why parents have children to see them experience the joys of innocence. Have you experienced similar things?

SciFi Chick
2005-Mar-09, 05:33 AM
Not at all. I'm sorry to hear you're not liking adulthood. From childhood, I couldn't wait to become an adult. It has been just as fun as I expected, and I wouldn't go back to childhood for anything.

I like Christmas more now than ever. There's nothing quite like picking out gifts for those you love.

I also find that when I work places which take the mystique away from what it once was, I find that in general, it enriches the experience.

Maybe you're just going through a depression.

paulie jay
2005-Mar-09, 05:44 AM
I can see where you're coming from Silent Knight, and I tend to agree with you. I'll give you a (brief!) personal example. All my life as a youngster I wanted to be a performing musician - and guess what, now I am. People always say to me "Oh it must be great playing music for people all the time!". Well, it can be, but mostly its a grind - same old songs, same old drunks, same old groupies...(whoops! :lol: ).

But you know what I mean, it's a bit like you and the amusement park I suppose - something that was once magical is now mundane. My mother once lived on the edge of the cliff that looks down onto Bondi Beach - it was the best view I'd ever seen! "I'll never get sick of this" I said. Well, 12 months later I barely looked at it!

I suppose that when we are kids things literally do happen by magic (at least to our perception) - presents appear under the tree, meals appear on the table, clothes appear in the wardrobe - we don't have to think about how these things get here. But in some ways I'm also like Sci Fi Chick, taking the mystery out of physics has for me only increased my interest and awe in the subject. But like you SK, Christmas for me is a bit of a bore...

2005-Mar-09, 07:22 AM
Would you by any chance be around 23-24 years old?

When I was 24, that was the oldest I ever felt in my life. Now I enjoy senior discounts at restaurants, but I really don't feel all that old - well at least when my arthritis is not acting up.

I think many of us go through a transition from youth and school age into adulthood. And it can be uncomfortable. Your perspectives start to widen, adn the background of experience you are accumulating starts to put more and more things into a real context. Milk doesn't magically appear in the ice box, it comes from the underside of cows - dirty old cows that have to be touched in a very personal way. Not only that, on our end it is the result of working for a paycheck with the realization that this procedure will go on the rest of your life. Geez, I am starting to feel young again just listening to myself - it all sounds awful.

2005-Mar-09, 09:31 AM
It seems that time is accelerating as I get older. My school years dragged by sooooo slowly, then I finally graduated, started my career, and now, boom, another 15 years has gone by!!! :o :o

captain swoop
2005-Mar-09, 09:50 AM
It seems that time is accelerating as I get older. My school years dragged by sooooo slowly, then I finally graduated, started my career, and now, boom, another 15 years has gone by!!! :o :o

'And then the one day you find ten years have got behind you
No one told you when to run, you missed the starting gun
And you run and you run to catch up with the sun, but it's sinking
And racing around to come up behind you again
The sun is the same in the relative way, but you're older
And shorter of breath and one day closer to death'

from Pink Floyd 'Time'

2005-Mar-09, 10:04 AM
I wonder why Roger Waters never won the most cheerful lyrics ever competition? :o :D

I had the same feeling about a year after graduating from uni. Things didnt seem fun and i didnt feel there was much point in anything. I had of course been working towards a degree for 3 years and now that was over. What was the focus now? I had got a job so that wasnt it. I started to come out of this when i realised i could set my own focus and projects and work towards achieving things myself. I think its very much a transitional thing.

2005-Mar-09, 11:23 AM
Growing up has been difficult for me. I think it's normal.

2005-Mar-09, 11:51 AM
Personally I love adulthood far more than childhood as I can do what I want rather than have a parent decide it for me. Set your own schedule, go on trips where you want to go, stay out as late as you want, I love it!

(no, I'm not married either :wink: )

2005-Mar-09, 03:43 PM
I've had a lot of similar experiences to what SK described in the OP. But then I read SciFi Chick's first line, "sorry you're not liking adulthood." If his experiences are like mine, I don't think that's what he meant at all!!!! I completely enjoy adulthood, I wouldn't want to go back to being a teenager or a kid, and I look forward to everything that life will bring me for the next 70 years!

But yes, some of the "excitement" is gone, and I too have attributed that to "growing up," and more specifically, maturing. Being more in control of my emotions. I have a few specific examples. I used to get so excited for my birthday. No matter what I had planned, or even if I had nothing planned at all, I would be so anxious the night before that it was hard to fall asleep! (Similar to SK's Christmas experiences) But when I turned 25, that was the first time I viewed it as just another day. Sure I still get a little excited, especially when I have a party, but none of the out-of-control nervousness that used to take over me.

A similar thing happens to me in baseball. I'm a huge fan, I've loved going to games and watching players take batting practice, and trying to get autographs since I was 12. Last summer I attended "Photo Day" with the Detroit Tigers, where fans got to go stand on the field before the game and take picures of/with, shake hands with, and talk to players. I saw many people around me, kids and adults, shaking with nervousness and excitement. I thought "that used to be me." I had a great time, but my emotions didn't overwhelm me. I didn't miss it at all! In fact, I thought that some adults older than me still acting that way were being pretty immature! The same thing happened a week ago when I was at Spring Training. You get a lot of opportunities to interact with players, and I got to talk to a lot of them over 3 days. Again--a great time, but not a lot of nervousness.

I see it as this: I've experienced enough range of emotion that my highs aren't always quite as high as they used to be, but then I'm able to make the lows not too low either! I am proud that I can control my emotions this way. It's a big help in romantic relationships too. Whenever I started a new one, it used to be all I could think about. I couldn't focus on anthing else! But now I can keep that more in check. But it doesn't mean I still don't enjoy all the simple pleasures in my life. Right now, my 19 month old niece brings me all the joy I need! I get excited most when I know I get to see her, like tonight!

2005-Mar-09, 04:49 PM
Silent Knight,

I seriously think you have to make your own fun in life. I do.

The cleaning crew at work, for example, no one ever talks to them. There was this cute little guy name Migual. He spoke no English. He was from Mexico. I can't treat people differently, it's just not in my nature.

One day, late at night, he was vacuuming the floors. I couldn't see him, because the cord to his vacuum is extremely long. So I unplugged the cord from the outlet, and the vacuum stopped. I could hear him trying to figure out what's wrong with the vacuum.

I couldn't hold it in any longer. I started laughing. Then I see his head pop up over the row of cubicles. I held up the plug with a big smile on my face. Then he started laughing. I plugged it back in, and laughed for the remainder of the night.

I not only made a new friend that day, but it felt good to laugh again after being depressed for so long (this was a year after 9/11).

Try having a little laugh sometime! It truly is contagious. :wink:

2005-Mar-09, 07:00 PM
I still enjoy walking down toy aisles at Wal-Mart-type stores and even large toy stores whether it's to buy for my grandkids or nieces and nephews.

When ever I go into a craft/hobby store to buy adult-craft items, I always browse the aisles with the plastic models reminiscing, still thinking someday I'll take the time to build another airplane or car, like I did when I was young.

I enjoy all shopping, which is fortunate, because my wife doesn't -- therefore I do all the shopping.

I still like to play video games and wish I had more time to learn the latest ones.

I remember this quote: Laws are like sausages. It's better not to see them being made." Otto Von Bismarck 1815 - 1898. It sounds like that quote applies to you, as it would the majority of us.

2005-Mar-09, 07:26 PM
Life is like a roll of toilet paper. The closer you get to the end, the faster it goes.

I tell the youngsters I occassionally work with to find their DMP (Definite Major Purpose), and get to work on it, RIGHT NOW, RIGHT WHERE YOU STAND. Check in regularly. Everything you do should directly relate to, or indirectly support your DMP. If not, evaluate for fit, modify behavior or DMP, and proceed forward. Continue cycle until life ends.

Regardless of how you define or measure success, and whether or not you ever live up to your own expectations, you will have lived a fun and rewarding life.

That's it; the secret to Life, the Universe & Everything. Thank you Mr. Adams.

2005-Mar-09, 07:37 PM
For anybody who is not having fun, or for whom life doesn't seem to be what it ought to be, (in case having fun is not your thing), here's a tool:

Ask why you feel that way. Then ask why again. Keep asking why until you get to some really basic answers. Hammer away, do not stop at something trivial and superficial like I do not have any friends, or I don't like my job, or my parents were mean to me, or other whiny stuff. Drill down, way down. Why, why, why, and why some more.

For every answer, ask why again. 2 things will come of this drill:

1) You might get to some meaningful answers, and identify some core behaviors or beliefs to change.

2) You just might recognize how much of what people carry on about these days is just plain whining.

BTW, this is a tricky tool to use with people with whom you don't have an MR (meaningful relationship). It can tend to be confrontational, and it is easy to throw up your hands, walk away, and blow off the person or idea. Get past that, and it works wonders.

2005-Mar-09, 08:25 PM
The beauty of adulthood is that it is what you make of it. The downside is, you have to get out and make it, its not coming to you at Christmas unless you pay for it yourself.

You've learned to see value over cost and understand the very human consequences behind selfish consumerism, those are great things to have come across. I went through a similar period working at a restaurant. I saw how people treated waiters and waitresses from their perspective (I was a busboy, but I'm pretty observant), and it did change how I handled going out to dinner. I also tend to avoid the commercialized, prepackaged nuke and go junk and cook most of my own meals. Its one of the sublime privileges of adulthood with critical thought, you take in observations about the way the world moves around you and you learn to be better than the tripe you encounter as you go. It pays off, believe me.

2005-Mar-09, 09:35 PM
Perhaps there's also a slight biological component. When you're a child you have a lot of energy and sense of wonder that motivates play, something that we lose as we get older.

I remember when I was a young lad I wondered why my parents weren't going to the candy store every day and buying $20 worth of candy for themselves - because that's what I would have done. And why didn't they feel like going to the amusement park every day? From the age of 4 to about 8 I thought adults were really lame because there were all sorts of fun things they could have been doing instead of dumb stuff like buying groceries and paying bills.

Later you start to figure out why they did that, and that same feeling extends until adulthood (though it hasn't stopped me from buying $10-$20 worth of candy at the candy store :-" )

2005-Mar-09, 09:38 PM
what got me most about growing up was that it wasn't as different as I thought it would be.

I grew up as the official nerd of a lot of my classes. I had a best friend stop speaking to me in fourth grade because I was a teacher's pet. and I thought to myself, it won't be like this when I'm an adult. the adults all respect intelligence (except, apparently, my fifth grade teacher, who got mad when I corrected his spelling).

but it isn't true. I still got asked how I could stand reading all the time. I still got treated like an outcast and called a show-off. in fact, one of the most positive responses I've ever gotten from a co-worker regarding my intelligence was the guy who informed me that I intimidate him, because I'm a woman who is clearly more intelligent than he. I told him I appreciated his honesty.

that beng said, I, too, am enjoying it more, though there's a lot more stress and my health is worse. at least there's no one telling me what time to go to bed anymore.

2005-Mar-09, 09:48 PM
Ah yes, there it is again, having fun! I too am amazed at the number of people who have very little, or no, fun. Shame on them. And they have all these responsible sounding excuses for not having fun. I have to do this, I can't do that, I must, I want, I need, I . . . . bleech!

I encourage my kids to blow off the routine. For example once every couple weeks or so (when mom's not around) we'll have something ridiculous for dinner. Like all the cake you can eat, or Girl Scout cookies & jalapeno-cheddar venison sausage. I don't think they'll get malformed or flunk out of grade school or take it on as a permanent diet; but some people react like I was poisoning my kids. If you are living life in a manner that makes it difficult to distinguish any one day from the next, you might want to examine that as a root cause of not feeling life is any fun.

mike alexander
2005-Mar-10, 01:08 AM
Heck, I've been moping since as early as I can remember. But a generally depressed outlook on life makes the special moments specialer. Those instants of 'gee wow'. Last fall, watching a spider spin an orb web and suddenly noticing it measures each strand. Whoa! THATS how they do it! Hairs on the back of your neck sort of thing.

2005-Mar-10, 02:17 PM
Later you start to figure out why they did that, and that same feeling extends until adulthood (though it hasn't stopped me from buying $10-$20 worth of candy at the candy store :-" )

Good! Being an adult hasn't stopped me from doing that either! :D

And about the amusement parks.....slightly OT, but I had a dream last night that the gates to an amusement park were opened one day, and instead of the expected mad rush of people, in came running 6 ostriches: 2 yellow, 2 blue, and 2 pink! I'd love to go to a park like that! :lol: To that point, my dreams are definitely not "grown up" as I am. In fact, I'm ususally in a high school setting. Stuck as a teenager in my dreams, I guess!