I Am Only a Kid, You Know?


Tara Bailey

Many seniors are excited to finally be able to graduate from high school and move on to the next adventure of their lives. Senior Krista Bailey is excited to graduate and leave high school to go to college.

Let me tell you that although I plan to go to college in the fall to prepare for my future career, there is something that you should know: I have no clue what I want to do. I should know by now—I am eighteen years old. This is the part where being eighteen years old really bites us in the butt: everyone expects us to have this master plan for the rest of our lives. There is this part when we turn eighteen years old and we feel like we are finally adults, but now since we are considered ones, we must know what we want to pursue in a career. If we were to say that we knew what we wanted to be, we would be lying. I, especially, do not know because I have changed my career choices plenty of times. Life is not about planning futures to the exact detail, but rather it is about finding them along the way.
Ever since I was five years old, I wanted to be a treasure hunter, a doctor, a writer, a teacher, a missionary, and a musician. I wanted to be a treasure hunter because I desired to explore, to discover, to imagine; I wanted to be a doctor because I wanted to help those in need; I wanted to be a teacher because I loved children and their thought processes; I wanted to be a writer because I loved to tell stories and to imagine; I wanted to be a musician because music liberated me; and I wanted to be a missionary because I wanted to help those in need around the world. I desired—at one point or another—all of these career choices. The problem is that I do not want to make something so definitive, so permanent as a career choice now because I do not want to be chained and restrained to something I might not want in the future. I do like to make up stories, to write, to help others, to teach little kids, to play the piano, but is there something more? Is there something that I would be better at, happier with? And, maybe the problem is that I do not want something so practical, so settling. Maybe, I want to be a missionary and a teacher and a pianist and a writer. Maybe I want to do them all, or perhaps, none of them at all. I don’t know, so please understand. Know that making life-changing decisions is not easy.
Plus, next to leaving the only shelter of high school that we have ever known, we are leaving for the very first time, away from home (for some, and for others, no). We always think that leaving home for the very first time is this big step to freedom because we can finally leave the nest that we came from. However, one day we will realize how much we should have appreciated that home, that shelter for bringing us up into the world right. We will appreciate that our parents prepared us for the big, bad world.
The thing is about turning eighteen and leaving mother’s nest that we must remember when leaving this world is to never forget where we came from, never forget the people who raised us and what they told us. Don’t forget the things we have learned from the past and from our parents or friends. Although I think I know everything now, I do know that I have learned so much from the time I was in elementary school to the time I was in middle school and from middle school to high school and from high school to now. I have learned so much from each chapter of my life, and I know that there is another chapter in my life that I will explore. I know that I do not know everything because there is so much of life and the world that I have never witnessed yet. I do not know everything about my life and what I want to do with it. I am not saying that I am a full-fledged adult—legally, but not otherwise.
Please, I beg of you—understand me. Understand that I am only eighteen years old, and I do not know everything. I am on a journey of discovery, not a plan set for life. I am not that wise. I’m only a kid, you know?