SO, there I was with a mate watching the antics of his 13-month-old daughter.
She sat in a little chair watching the Wiggles, wrapped in her blanket to keep her warm, while her devoted mother lovingly fed her slices of banana.
I thought to myself – well, there’s an example of living your ideal life! Oh, why couldn’t it be like that forever!
When and why does that change and be replaced with looking after and being accountable for ourselves?
I guess it changes when we accept that it has changed and start to take personal responsibility for our own choices, decisions, and actions.
For some people, of course, their expectation remains that even though they may “grow up”, they still expect other people to feed and care for them and make decisions on their behalf while they sit and watch the modern-day version of The Wiggles.
“Growing up” (or, more accurately, “growing taller”) is not the same as maturing!
I am an observer of people, and I fear that for some (especially over the last 18 months), the adult in them may have either regressed, never been tested or never really developed at all.
I believe it’s going through challenging times that make us truly reflect on who we are and the choices we make. Some of us choose to be an adult or I guess more specifically, to act like an adult.
That means making decisions (hopefully good ones), taking action and owning the implications of the results of that action.
Some take another route!
I think there are both “adult adults” and “baby adults”. The “adult adults” have accepted adulthood with all its challenges and opportunities. “Baby adults” are those who haven’t accepted that responsibility and accountability of adulthood and demonstrate dysfunctional behaviour when they don’t get their way or when things don’t go the way they would like them to.
Metaphorically, in those situations, they throw their “toys out of the cot” and look for reasons to blame others, not take responsibility, and even lie in relationships, workplaces, and communities.
They become the victims and believe and act that the world is against them.
“Adult adults” recognise that life is a process, and that process needs to be followed.
“Baby adults” see life as an outcome – as something they want for themselves, regardless of the effort and process that they follow.
For “baby adults”, life is all about them and all around them – they are the centre.