I once saw a comment on a friends social media page from a wise loved one who had lived on this earth far longer than she and I. He said, “Remember, growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional.”
I do not believe he meant this in a negative way. He was not implying that we should not be mature, responsible human beings as adults. He was reminding us all to never stop being a kid at heart. He was telling us to never grow up so much that we can no longer sit in the snow and build snowmen or curl up in blankets on a nice plush couch with a warm cup of hot cocoa and watch cartoons when we get snowed in.
I was thinking of his comment today as I, a 24-year-old woman, got up with the sun and excitedly threw on my duck boots and tramped outside to catch the morning snowflakes on my tongue. I was thinking of his comment when I scooped fluffy, white goodness into a bowl and made snowcream with my sister. And again, when we bundled up and went to build snow creatures in the wonderland that used to be our backyard.
At the end of the day, I’m an adult that goes to work like everyone else my age. I carry myself like a professional when the time calls for it. I handle the world around me with care and try to incorporate all the wisdom I have been raised with. On the outside I have grown older. But on the inside, I will always be a kid that wonders at the simple things and gets excited about playing in the snow.
I have to say, I would not change a thing.
PS – Yes, that is a snow Totoro. Every yard with a forest needs one. I called him, Snowtoro.