This I Believe

Kelsea - Maple Valley, Washington
Entered on April 18, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

When I was 9, I was tired of being young. I wanted to be old and respected. I wasn’t even into my double digits, such a baby age. Being old seemed so cool, so sophisticated. I wanted to be 10. 10 seemed like the perfect age ever. Man, when I turned 10, I would have the best life ever.

I remember about a week away from my big 10th birthday. I was thinking “deeply” about life. I was going to be old in a short time. But for some reason, I didn’t feel old or cool or sophisticated. “Mom, am I old?” I asked. “Kelsea, you’re 9 years old, you’re as old as dirt,” she laughed. Maybe when I’m 16 I’ll be old, I thought. Yeah, 16 is a good age, I thought.

Finally, it was the day for my 16th birthday, the best day ever. I was driving to dinner with my parents, a tradition, when I thought of that time when I was 9 years old. I still don’t feel old, I thought to myself. Maybe when I turn 18 I would be old.

It wasn’t until a few weeks ago, when I was looking through pictures from my 10th birthday that I realized my life was going by too fast. One day I was thinking about turning 10, and the next, I’m 16 already. Next thing I know, I’ll be 18 and before I know it, I’ll be in college. Which is a scary thought. Life is Christmas. You spend so long preparing for it, and it’s gone before you know it.

I’m long from my 10th birthday, and yet I don’t feel old at all. I decided I don’t want to feel old for a long time when I was looking at that picture. I’m not going to wish to be 18 or 21 or anything anymore. When you wish to be older constantly, your life is never good enough. You can choose to live now and be okay with being 16, or to never be good enough. I’m going to enjoy my days that I have and not wish I’m a day older than I am. I don’t want my life to go any faster than it already goes because one day I will wake up and my life will be almost up and I will wish I lived it in the present. That’s what I believe, living life in the present.

16 is a good age.