Getting older…


Time flies with an incredible speed.

I was saddened by a realization that I am not getting any younger. Yesterday, I have just turned 27 and honestly I am quite anxious about being in this age as I feel like I’m knocking on the door of adulthood where being bold and sensible is a requisite.

Too bad, thinking about it makes me scared and pressured. Prior my birthday, I have examined myself on how I have grown as a person. One moment I was this carefree and innocent kid and with just a flick of an instance, I am now the sensible yet troubled adult. Well, with that I agree with what Ellen Glasgow has to say about growing old: “The older I grow the more earnestly I feel that the few joys of childhood are the best that life has to give.”

At 27 I still yearn for those carefree moments I had when I was a child. If only there’s a choice I will forever cling to my childhood. Childhood for me is the representation of those happy times on which things weren’t so serious.Childhood is the time I spent on the streets playing with busload of friends. Childhood is a flash of lurid memories etched on our smiles back in kindergarten days. Childhood is a beautiful scar brought by our mischievous and hyperactive actions of being a brat. And childhood, in the eyes of a lad who is growing old, is nothing but a fleeting memory of a joyful yesterday.

As a young child back then who had spent his childhood years knowing and appreciating the beauty of living in the countryside, I was accustomed to so many adventurous things. I could vividly recall on how my youthful escapade had transpired in my small yet treasured place called “Tarahid”. Tarahid was home to me for about seventeen years until I left to study and find a living somewhere else. This bucolic place in Panganiban Catanduanes was our playground for it boasts an array of rice field so scenic especially during planting season.

I, together with my play buddies before, also experienced the bliss of having to ride the carabao’s back in many summer afternoons. Apart from spending most of my time in the springy turfs, I have had also a blast from scouring the so called “suba” at the back of our house, and this long stretch “suba” (creek) spreads out to the vastness of the sea up to the Pacific Ocean.

From the time my grandparents had indulged themselves in gravel and sand business, on which they happened to own two motorboats being moored in the creek on our backyard, was also the time I acquainted my younger self to the adventures brought by the sea. Back then, our playtime includes catching small crabs that are hiding from small holes and tin cans during low tide, catching the ever elusive “tabaysak” (mudfish) with our bare hands, and playing with sand turned into hard balls, letting it clash and battle with each other which we tagged as a royal rumble.

I am so grateful, then, that the roads in “tarahid” and even in other barrios in our town weren’t cluttered by vehicles that we’re able to play “Patintetero”, “Piko”, “langit at lupa” “tumbang preso” and my favorite of all, “taguan”(hide and seek) without minding our safety brought by the threat of vehicular accidents. Would I be able to experience this kind of childhood, had I been born somewhere else? Maybe not. Thus, I am so thankful that the place where I grew up has given me enough space to enjoy one of the important phases of a person’s life — childhood. I am wondering if what makes me feel this utter yearning to bring back the old times. Sometimes I would think that maybe the place where I grew up and the people who had been part of it have something to do with the nostalgia I am feeling. As Sam Ewing put it, “When you finally go back to your old hometown, you find it wasn’t the old home you missed but your childhood.” True, I miss the childhood itself since it comprises the entirety of nostalgic ingredients such as the characters or the people behind a memory, the place or the plot that makes it more vivid and the overall experience that is worth retelling and recalling.

Now, as I say all over again, I realized how lucky I am to have a retentive memory on which I can store the detailed fragments of my childhood, though I knew that these blissful recollections will forever remain as an intangible replay that can be played all over again only on my mind.

Looking at my 27-year-old self now, of course, it would be awkward to do those naive things I have done as a child. It is expected, with this age bracket, that I’ll be acting more sensibly. The pathway to being a child to adulthood is quite dissimilar wherein it is more complex and stressful in the latter. If before, as a child, you didn’t worry too much and what only bother you are worries like what and where to play, and other insubstantial things, now you get to be bombarded with real problems, problems that can weaken even your tough and old physical frame.

As of now, I am getting used to what they call problems of adult like paying bills for different essential services such as electric bill, water bill, house rental, housing loan, etc. I have also conditioned myself from the word drudgery wherein I need to battle the exhausting, boring and unpleasant work just to serve the necessities of life. At times, I am displeased of the thought that I need to work really hard just to survive, unlike when I was a kid on which I get to be served upon waking up with the meals that my parents had prepared. At times, when I am alone, tired and beset by many predicaments, I entertain the thought of going back home to my parents and again beg for the comfort they bring.

Adulthood, the phase where I am now, is troubling and a bit scary. This perhaps the reason on why I wanted to stay young, like a child with a carefree and untroubled spirit. But as they say, only those coward people refuse to grow old and I am not a coward. I just feel tired sometimes, that I wish to go back at those sweet childish days that are so relaxing. And you can’t blame me on that. Anyway, there’s still beauty about growing old because through this, we get to acquire the wisdom to learn and understand the real meaning and the sole purpose of our existence.


About john tugano

A twenty-something lad, who wishes to unravel more of society's unfathomable ironies. View all posts by john tugano

15 responses to “Getting older…

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