Early Years | Teen Ink

Early Years

February 8, 2022
By Anonymous

“Life isn’t fair”

Something you have heard before. Most likely when you were a kid. This is something that adults tell you to avoid explaining why they made a decision. To them, it seems like an easy solution, but in reality, it can be damaging later on in your life. You see, if you tell a kid that life is unfair too often, they’re subconscious mind will be conditioned to believe that they should never discuss smaller inconveniences. Later on in life, that habit leads to avoiding discussion of larger issues. This unhealthy habit has potential to evolve into worse problems like social anxiety. This happens because kids will try to hold back emotions and battle their problems alone. Bottling up emotions to the point of panic and anxiety attacks. I would know. I experience it myself.

Not too long ago, I came to a sudden realization. I realized that every single kid I deal with- whether I like them or not- is building a childhood as we speak. Creating a portfolio of memories to look back on in 10 to 15 years. Making memories to laugh at and think about at 3am. Quite the conflicting thought.

After pondering this fact, I made it my mission to make every kid’s childhood memories of me good. I want them to reminisce on our times together. For them to remember me in a positive light. Not only that, I want to save them from the same problems I have. If I see someone telling a kid something damaging now, I have an issue with it. My goal is to make a good impact on the childhoods around me.

I remember one time, when my little sister was younger, she really really wanted to hang out with my friends and I. For context, we were about to be on our way to get a snack on our bikes, and she asked, “Can I come with?” and one of my friends responded with a somewhat aggressive answer along the lines of, “why would we do that?” It’s not a huge deal itself, but knowing my sister and her past experiences, I had to step in. Now, I love my friends, but I genuinely can’t stand for that kind of thing. I remember acting in the heat of the moment. I didn’t think about what to say. Realizing the damage a rude comment can do to a highly influential kid, I let my response out. I said something like “whoa hold on, Ellie, we would love to let you join, but we have to cross the street on the way. We were asking Mom earlier about you coming, but she said you can’t” My older sibling backs me up. They said “Yeah Mom won’t let you cross -undisclosed street-” In this moment, I glanced at them, giving them a reassuring smile. My sister’s face lit up, and I feel good knowing that I improved a bad childhood experience. The same thing I’ve been trying to prove this whole time.  I could tell how important these moments are for a young kid like her. A nice comment from an older peer can be very influential.

My friend, noticing her mistake, covered her mouth hastily. She looked at me, and my immediate reaction was to make an exaggerated scowl to lighten the mood and ease tension. Soon after, we left on our bikes with the promise of bringing home a strawberry milkshake for Ellie. I learned something from this interaction. I may not have known it then, but sitting here, at 9:06am,  January 26, I look back on my actions and realize something important. So crucial that I wish I hadn’t missed it.

I look back at these words I just wrote, and I can take something away from it. The way I explained the situation to my sister, should not have worked. But it did. “Why?” I’m not completely sure. Maybe that’s for me to find out soon. Or maybe you- the reader -knows why it worked.

In the end, I realize just how crucial it is that I make good memories for these kids to look back on, and maybe even learn from. And I know now of my responsibility in return for existing as a now older peer. I hope that someday I can pass my responsibility to the next generation of highly ambitious teens.

The author's comments:

A story about childhood

Similar Articles


This article has 0 comments.