I’m twenty-eight years old now and one of the first things I thought was that exactly half my life ago, about this time of the year, I was about to begin my freshman year of high school. For me, like many I imagine, middle school was a horrible experience. The vice-principle expelled me for the last three weeks of eighth grade and at the time that this happened, there wasn’t much certainty about whether I would be allowed to attend the local high-school, let alone graduate from the eighth grade.
Twenty-eight compared to fourteen, I remember a lot of it. It took me exactly that same amount of time to get from age zero to high-school. That former period of time seems to be stretched out, infinite and fantastical, filled with legendary characters where every day was a momentous occasion where something merited a celebration.
The latter fourteen years went by in a flash and although now, things from day-to-day appear to change less, cumulatively they still do. And quite so. I think I was lucky enough as a young person to be surrounded by family who believed in my energy and intelligence even when I wasn’t aware of the potential that I had. Mainly, it was my parents who fought for me…and battled me too when they felt it necessary. Still don’t agree with that!
I’m not really sure what being twenty-eight is supposed to mean. Probably nothing. For my birthday I got a bike helmet from my parents, because I notoriously don’t wear one, even as a bicycle commuter. I’m twenty-eight, a grown kid with even more energy and a wonderful gift called self-awareness. And there my parents are, still looking out for me.