Life: Growing Pains

Prior to opening my blog, my personal Instagram page became like a diary, a way for me to vent. Sometimes I would be so overcome with emotion, I needed a platform to share it on. Writing by hand was not enough – loose sheets of paper would go missing eventually, as I had no concrete diary. So, I went to Instagram. I’d find a related photo and my fingers would glide with ease across the keyboard. 

I read a post by Ife of White Roses and Caramel (here), in which she reflected on dealing with the incoming changes as she has finished high school. She will soon attend university, away from her parents and having to make her own decisions. It reminded me of the last days I spent in high school. I loved high school and hated it.

I hated it because I was highly introverted and so into my shell, I shied away from many opportunities I should’ve taken advantage of. I loved it because I felt safe: I was under the responsibility of adults who were my teachers. I loved nearly all my teachers and could go to them for help and assistance. I didn’t want the safety bubble to pop. I was scared of being churned out into the real world. When the emotions got too much, I took to my IG journal to write this:

Warning: long post ahead

I walk down the hallways, the whispers of excitement invading my ears and innermost thoughts as the year 12s around me croon about finishing school. They’re full of hope and excitement, ready for their thoroughly planned adventures with their individual circles around the world.

I’m the outlier. Graduation day creeps close and I feel sweaty and sick and the sheer thought of escaping the sheltered clutches of school. High school, the defining years of an individual.

I shall miss the mornings waking early and trudging to school not caring too much about my appearance. I miss that the scores after a test would be called out. I will miss the reassuring smiles teachers would give you as you asked for their help and they demystified the assignment that once appeared so complex.

I will miss my heavy school bag, the congested hallways filled with midgets (people in the lower grades, they were seriously so short!). I will miss sitting in the library at lunch and on the concrete oval steps in the sun during summer or on the concrete floor outside the school gym during winter. I will miss the classroom jokes, the faces I had grown so accustomed to. These thoughts haunt me, and the tears threaten to develop in my eyes.

I’m not ready, but I must be. I must enter the ‘real world’ eventually.

Looking back, I would go back in time and tell my 2015 self that everything was going to be alright. Adjusting would be hard, and some big changes were coming, but at the end of the day I would survive.


P.S. I miss my Doc Marten boots. This photo was taken on my high school graduation day. I cried so much during the graduation period. I just wasn’t ready.

Then again, I’m 19 and don’t have major responsibilities like some people. Some people were thrown into the real world earlier, perhaps due to the death of their caretakers or any other series of unfortunate events. I think that now, looking back at that my candid entry, a few lessons can be learnt:

  • In life, change is constant. You must always be ready for change. Things are hard when you don’t desire change as you can become stagnant instead. When you’re meant to progress to the next level, you shouldn’t be wishing that you would stay where you were. Re-adjusting may be hard, but at the end of the day it’s worth it. I was moving from high school to the next phase of life. Being scared was normal, but I should’ve also prepared myself more to embrace the coming change.
  • Always be prepared, prepare your mind especially. Strive to accelerate, not stagnate. 
  • It’s okay to be scared, but make sure at the end of the day you can see how the change has defined you as a person. Always take lessons, and keep learning.
  • Surround yourself with positive people, people who will push you to stop being scared for no reason. People who will be there to support you through the times of fear and doubt.

It’s crazy because now high school is a blurring memory. I’ve moved on and am only looking towards the future while focusing on the present. Don’t panic, just try and make yourself more accepting to change. Be prepared! Don’t be scared. It’s okay to be scared, but don’t let it cripple you. 

How do you cope with major life changes?

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12 thoughts on “Life: Growing Pains”

  1. To deal with major life changes, I just try to roll with the punches, but it’s hard sometimes being known as the one everyone can count on, and the one who’s so tough and mature and all that. Because what if I’m not? Thought provoking post, Amaka.

    1. I get that! We should try and realise that those we rely on also need help. They don’t always have it all figured out. We all need support! We are all allowed to have our weak and insecure moments. Thank you for commenting!

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