What aspect of your life now would shock your teenaged idealistic self?

What aspect of your life now would shock your teenaged idealistic self?


Wednesday, August 12, 2020

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NO matter how much we age, it is near impossible drown out the memories of our teens — the years we spent learning about our individuality, chaos and all, painting pictures of our adult selves and charting roadmaps to our wildest dreams. But as some of us have now learnt, contending with life experiences, unprotected by the wings of our parents, our life decisions, mistakes, along with other changes in our trajectory meant that there was no guarantee that life morphed into the paintings canvassed by our idealistic teenage selves.

How far off target did you fall? Some readers share the aspect of their lives that would most shock their teenaged idealistic selves.

Ayana, 30, insurance agent:

I didn't see myself as a “yam head” — being a toy to any man. Everybody thought whoever I decided to date would marry me almost immediately. Well, I keep being played by a man who isn't even in my league. So I can safely say that I shocked myself.

Elvis, 30, security personnel:

I think I didn't see myself in the profession that I am in. I always strive to be great at what I do, but adulting is hard; the working world is controlled by links... I guess maybe one day a company will recognise the value I could bring to their company and give me an opportunity. For now, I am just struggling.

Trishelle, 27, vendor:

Honest to God, I would never see myself hustling like this. Maybe some hyped up hustling on social media — bad gyal style, but not like a market type thing like this. Things are going good for me in here, don't get me wrong, and mi buy up all my nice things, but I used to look down on market people, I won't lie.

McWayne, 28, risk management analyst:

I always knew I would do well and at all times was cognisant of this, but I always thought things would unfold in Jamaica. I did not think that I'd be living in America and working at one of the country's most revered financial institutions, or that I would be able to travel as much as I have. But it's been a fascinating journey.

Andrew, 33, software engineer:

I would say the most shocking thing is that I didn't make it to an international football team. I was gifted and people always saw the potential, but I guess lack of focus and the injuries got the better of me. Football is still my life, so maybe I will find myself in coaching to make sure that a talented youth like me doesn't fall by the wayside as I have.

Elisia, 40, unemployed:

My teenage self, to be honest, probably couldn't recognise me. That is how much I have deviated from the path that I was on. I am a mother of four and really there's no dad for them. I made some poor choices.

Garden, 35, banker:

My teenage self would not have imagined that my dirt poor mother would have found a way to get me through school, all while taking care of my other siblings. I knew I was going to do well, but I thought it would take much longer, and I'd have to do jobs like being a taxi operator, store clerk and sales rep, all before doing my dream job. But I didn't have to take that road, thank God.

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