Mera Joy Aniolga

What’s My Age Again?

In Current Events, Event, Personal, Work on July 1, 2010 at 1:05 pm

“In a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate yourself?”

“I guess, it would have to be 5. I’m just 19. I may have learn a thing or two but that’s just not enough. I’m still a kid and I still have a lot to learn”

“I beg to disagree. I had my baby when I was your age….”

I can vividly recall how that interview went. I was talking to my superior as we were having our mid-year evaluation.

Our conversation showed the two sides of young people these days. One side is the carefree devil-may-care people who are free to act and live their lives in accordance to their age. Another side of it is the mature and responsible face of youth that shows their ability to handle and face things no matter how “for adults” it may be. By for adults I mean things like supporting a family, raising kids and the like.

Lucky for me I belong to the group of young people who were given the privilege to experience every stage of their lives with freedom and vibrancy that only youth can give. I know people who were forced to grow up overnight. I have this friend who got knocked up at the age of 19, she was forced to grow up and raise her kid. I know another person who lost his dad at the age of 18, he had no choice but to work in order to contribute to their family income and help his mom make both ends meet. These unfortunate people are forced to mature overnight as they have to face circumstances and deal with issues that mature people usually deal with.

Take the case of this 19-year-old councilor in a place here in Iloilo.  His full name did not catch my attention but his age did. This kid surely made me feel that I lived a useless life. Here I am at 24 doing and feeling the same old things which I did back when I was still 13 years old.

I don’t know about other 24-year-olds but aside from the freedom that came along as my age progressed, nothing has actually changed. The school became a job, the allowances became salaries but everything is still the same. I am probably saying this because I belong to the fortunate few who are single and ready to mingle. HAHA.

Back to the 19-year-old councilor, I don’t exactly know how I feel towards this as it both stirs negative and positive feelings in me. Positive I say because this kid is like the epitome of Jose Rizal’s famous words, “The Youth is the hope of the Motherland.”

But it also stirs negative feelings as I assumed that this kid is a product of political dynasty. I imagine him having long line of politician ancestors.

I don’t know whether it was his decision to run or not. I don’t know if he is happy with his success or not. But I do hope that he gets to do his job properly. Live up to the expectations of the people who voted for him and prove wrong the prejudices of his non-believers.

Youth they say is wasted on the young. I had my share of being a stupid teenager. I had my share of being a  productive young one. I had been on the good side of being young. I had been on the bad side of being young.

Now, I am simply jaded.

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