As I go into these last few days of my undergrad and start thinking about what’s next, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about not only where I want to go but how I got to where I am…
It's taken me a long time to get to where I am right now, all my life in fact! But I feel like these last 12 months have been incredibly formative. For so, so long I would look in the mirror and think that I hadn't changed, my appearance, my ways of thinking... I always saw myself as little. In some ways I still do - I still see myself as an inexperienced, naive little girl who just wants to eat her Cheerios and Craisins while making some craft. But recently I've been seeing less of that little girl and more of a (don't cringe when I say this) young woman (you cringed. I know you did. well, I did...).
It's weird for me to think of myself as a woman and not a girl anymore. But, in doing so I really see myself differently. All of my life I spent so much time watching other girls and wishing I was older and more like them. In kindergarten I wanted to be in grade seven and in grade nine I wanted to be in university. But as I've gotten older I've realized that in all of that watching and waiting I never really savoured where I was. But I'm right here! At 22 (almost 23) I am really feeling like "that girl I used to look up to." I have accomplished so much and have learned so much and as hard as it is to see sometimes, I'm a woman.
When I say "I'm a woman," in no way do I want you to think that I think of myself as wise and all knowing and of great maturity. I am the first one to laugh when someone farts, I enjoy watching Disney movies and eating toddler food, and I know that I have so much to learn and so much to experience. All I mean when I say that I'm a "woman" is that I'm no longer a little girl incapable of doing things on her own or thinking for herself. Being a woman means that I stand up for myself and that I take up the space I'm entitled to.
I think it took me a long time to get here because I didn't do what a lot of other people my age did. I didn’t (and still don’t) drink, I never went through a party phase, and I've never been in an "adult" relationship (get your mind out of the gutter, I just mean long term). Despite this, I am confident in who I am and happy with where I'm at. I just think that in not doing those things it made it take longer for me to feel like a woman and not a little girl.
Writing all of this makes me feel like a big fat narcissist. Who the heck cares that I feel less like a little girl and more like a woman? Honestly, maybe no one. But also, maybe someone. If I’d read something like this when I was a younger I think it would have made me feel more ok with seeing myself as little. It would have let me know that there’s no right or wrong way to grow up and whether I mean to do it or not, it’ll happen. It would have acted as a reminder that eventually I’ll see myself as a grown up (or at least bigger than little) and I’ll stop thinking about where other people are at and start thinking about where I’m at.
If you’ve read this far it probably means that you’re related to me, so hi mom! But if by some chance you’re not one of my relatives and you're still reading I hope you’ve found this to be inspiring in some way or another and that you feel a little bit more ok with where you’re at in this very moment.
If you feel like sharing, I would love to know how you feel about where you’re at. Do you feel big? Little? Lost? Confused? This woman wants to hear from you!