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What Happens When We Grow Up?

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Soulmate and I were getting gas (no, not THAT kind!) for the car the other day and I saw a big sign for Nestle DrumstickNestle Drumstick inside the gas station. Do you remember those?

It transported me back to the summers when I was a kid. Getting instantly taken back to a warm summer day in the innocence of childhood made me remember all the simple things that made me smile back then.

I remember…

  • Nestle Drumsticks
  • Blowing dandelions into the air and watching them dance away to plant themselves for next year
  • Eating berries off thorny branches (oh the pain we endured to get the good, juicy berries!)
  • Running barefoot in the dirt and loving how the ground felt
  • Swinging on a swing for hours
  • Playing down by the creek and exploring all the buggies in the water
  • Chewing on gum and trying to blow the BIGGEST bubble
  • Imagining myself flying to the moon
  • Listening for the Dickie Dee and scrounging for change to get a SpaceSicle
  • Selling enough newspapers to buy my Dad a boat

(couldn’t find any pics of me as a kid, so a found these on a fun stock site!)

As I recall these memories and actually ‘feel’ them, it reminds me that as ‘grownups’, we grow up and become cautious because we are more aware of dangers and improbabilities. We don’t reach as far or as high and often pull back on our ambitions.

Do you notice how that sort of adult awareness has held you back from doing something that you always wanted to do?

Natalie Brown

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  • Hello Natalie,

    This is a fantastic topic!

    Somehow we believe there are ‘rules’ to being a grown up. I did refrain from a lot of those childhood activities that brought me joy for many years. And then I decided to allow myself to do them again. Just recently I have:
    • Picked wild blackberries,
    • Danced in the rain,
    • Danced with fireflies, and
    • Spent hours coloring.
    I still sit outside in the dark and count the stars, allow myself to reach for my wildest dreams, and make time everyday to nurture my creativity.
    I think it is time to let go of the old definition of growing up. I know there needs to be some grown up behaviors going on but, who says we can’t take off our shoes and dance in the sand or watch butterflies playing in the flower beds.
    There was once a song I adored long ago called “Stop and Smell the Roses” the lyrics in that song is what I believe today.
    “We’ve got to stop and smell the roses,
    We’ve got to count our many blessings every day.”
    And NURTURE that child who sees beauty in everything.
    That child is still you.
    I’ll add… one day recently I was watching the rain falling outside my window and I tweeted “why can’t grownups dance in the rain?” The reply was overwhelming and mostly “who says they can’t” so I promptly put on my mud boots, gathered a couple of towels (a bit of grown up kicking in) and went out to play in the rain. It was refreshing and my hair softer than ever for a whole week.
    Thank you for this blog post and for reminding me of such delightful memories of childhood.

    • Hi Deb!

      Isn’t it funny how we change? I mean, I have to say I am pretty lucky that as I have grown up I did not ‘conform’ to adult ways (most of them anyway). But I do realize that we take things away from ourselves, and we really don’t have to!

      I was so happy to read your list of things that you have done, and so pleased that you have found simple things to bring you joy and reconnect with your child. We can totally do all of these things and more. I think it’s so important to do this to remain creative, free, happy etc.

      I LOVED you putting on your mudboots and dancing in the rain. Isn’t it the best feeling!

      Thank you for sharing!


  • Oh that we would become as little children again, eh Miss N?

    I remember the mud fights and skinny dippin’ in the stock tank in the hills behind the house.

    Of all the things I wanna do in this life, “grow up” isn’t one of’em.

    Great post. Thanks for the trip down memory lane.

    Keep the faith and keep being YOU!

    TrueBeliever & HopeDealer

    • Ha ha Ron… I feel you on never wanting to grow up. I mean, of course we take on more responsibility as we grow older, but if growing up means becoming one dimensional (which sadly happens to many), I want no part of it, no matter what anyone says!

      Glad this took you down memory lane.

      I think it is very important to keep the mind of your childhood even as you ‘grow up’. We see things from a beautiful perspective when we keep the mind of a child.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts and for reading my first installment of 2009!


  • Why, when I was a boy… !

    With a few changes in terminology, I remember all those things. Except I could never learn to blow bubbles with bubble gum.

    Don’t know if my adult hesitancy is all due to unreasonable fears. These days, if I tried some of the things I did as a kid, I’m liable to strain something — or break a hip. And I can recall throwing Lawn Darts way up in the air, and standing nearly under them cause it looked so cool, watching them fall.

    I don’t necessarily miss doing the stuff I did as a kid so as I’d try it now. Some of it wouldn’t be much fun anymore. And I think running under the sprinkler in my underwear wouldn’t please my neighbors much.

    But I do miss, as a kid, feeling like it was okay to do that stuff. I miss not feeling as if I have to hurry today, so I can prepare for going back to Adult Stuff tomorrow. The one thing I want out of my lottery ticket, is to get that feeling back.


    • Griz,

      ha ha… I guess running thru the sprinkler in your underwear as an adult might be cause for someone to call 911. How sad that the innocence is lost just because you are over 18? An adult would most likely be called ‘mad’ if they did that. Isn’t it funny how perspective changes with age?

      Can I ask you why you feel the lottery ticket is your only pathway to get the feeling back? Why not find some things that are free that connect you with that place. When I thought about it, just blowing on a dandelion was so freeing… and that costs nothing. I did that today in fact!

      BTW when I come to do a show in your town, I’m getting you a pack of Hubba Bubba and we’re gonna practice till you get it! LOL


  • Debbie Capps

    I don’t want to grow up I’m a toys r us kid. LOL Oh how wonderful the walk down memory lane. What ever happened to the Ice-cream trucks that would comb the neighborhoods with music loud and enticing.

    Thankfully I keep in touch with the mini-me by learning new things.. I learned this week at 50 something that the nascar 08 wii game is easier than the 09 version.. Video games with the grandkids is actually challenging LOL.

    • Debbie! I’m with you! You know it’s funny, when I was researching the Dickie Dee, I found out that they were bought by Unilever and then Unilever became a division of Good Humor – Bryers… victims of corporate consolidation sadly. Read more here>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dickie_Dee
      I had a MAJOR crush on the Dickie Dee dude who came to our Cul-de-sac! LOL

      Wow, you are ahead of me with the WII deal! Go girl, go!!!!!! Vrrrroooooooooooooommmmmm

  • Hey Natalie,

    I remember jumping off of my parents garage, pretending to be superman. About 4 years ago my next door neighbor came by the house to tell me that my two sons were jumping off of the roof of THE HOUSE onto a trampoline!!! Boy, I scolded them, but then I remembered those days when I was “adventurous” and I kinda chuckled to myself

    • Awe Slimdog! You were killing the joy! I guess in one way, the fearlessness leads to more injuries as a child, but it’s great to keep a little of that as you grow up. Fearless! I’m glad you did say something to the kids, cuz someone coulda broke something. Next u will be catching them running with scissors! LOL

  • Nat,

    I don’t need the lottery money for the freedom to do those things today, but for the freedom to not worry so much about making a living tomorrow. Being rich might not buy me happiness, probably wouldn’t. But I’d somehow struggle through. 😉

    When you do perform in town here, I think I’ll keep the sprinkler ready. Or if it’s in July, maybe we can just go make sand castles down on Park Point, and take a swim in the big lake. It used to be awful pretty down there. Haven’t been in a long while.


    • I hear you Griz! Building sand castles sounds like a blast. You need to get over to the lake before I get there though! That can be your homework this week:

      Go to lake…

  • Hey Natalie,
    YES YES YES!!! Oh, the memories you have sparked by this post. It takes me to days when friends and I would race to our bikes after school and race to the store… not to see who could get there first but, rather, to see who might have the most gruesome wipeout… oh, to be young boys again!

    And regarding growing up… there is one thing I want my little girl to know as she grows up and that is that ANYTHING can be accomplished through thought and not to let the fear of the unknown intrude on her… I see a girl living her life today without fear, with confidence and happiness.

    Thanks for the wonderful post… A post on mine from the past: Overcoming your Fears: http://bit.ly/ARVof

    Darren Sproat

    • Darren, you are an awesome Dad! So how bad was your baddest wipeout anyway?

      Thanks for sharing your blog with us also.

  • Von Powell

    I was honestly just thinking about this the other day. I beleive that as you get older, your more exposed to things in life that many of our parents tried to guard us from experiencing and understanding as children. And as we grow we forget about all of the little things in life that bring joy and happiness. When your a child, life is simple. But as we all know adulthood brings a handful of obstacles that we have to concur. Its imperative that we always remember to go back to the simple things in life that bring about happiness. Man on man do I wish I could sometimes go back to 5 and stay forever. ps I love that soulmate part. One day I long to have that word as part of my vocabulary.

    • Von,

      You will find your soulmate if you keep your eyes open.

      I think that caution in some regards is a healthy thing… it’s just that when we become OVER cautious and over anything that we begin to lose the essence we need to live a full and present life.

      Thanks for sharing!

  • Maybe I’m standing here alone feeling like a child but I’ve done a lot of those things recently. I was having a biggest bubble challenge, I ran around in the sand barefoot,then I hopped on a swing. Oddly, I’m sitting here eating a Drumstick right now as I type this one handed :). On the other hand a lot of the things I wanted to do as an innocent child I changed my mind after I learned the reality in them ie flying to the moon being a Police officer etc.
    But that’s the beauty of being a kid, innocence. Thinking that everything in the world works magically or with a dash of fairy dust. I miss that.

    • Donnell, Ha ha that rox that you did those things. Can u share that Drumstick please!

      Yeah I think it’s really, really healthy to apply a liberal dose of fairy dust to one’s life every week!

      Fairy dust for everyone!!!

  • I believe that our childhoods are some of the most precious moments we hold dear. Certain things bring back memories and thoughts and it’s hard to see why we can’t have that same feeling as adults.

    I think it comes with the territory of the responsibilities that we have. We start careers, paying bills, and things in that matter so like people have said in the past, what you’ve learned in the past, will help you out in the future.

    Good topic thought! Being a kid is great!

    • Marcus,

      I also think childhood is precious. Everything is new, everything is possible. I like to try to remember that every day. The adult world comes with a set of rules, that while some make sense… they should not dull our dreams or beat us down. I think it’s good to keep that sense of hope that you had as a kid. And I think it’s important to re-connect with those simple things that gave us peace.


  • Susanti

    The answer to your question is a definite YES. Many times I’ve asked my inner kid what ever happened to her, lol. That’s why I like the young ones so much, because they are not afraid yet or aware of all there is outside themselves. Ah well, we just have to remind ourselves enough that we should not forget about the inner kid and not allow ourselves to be manipulated by society’s consciousness ;-). Stay true to yourself!

    • Hi Susanti!!! So great to see you over here. I am so glad you are asking your inner kiddie where the heck she is. I know a little abotu you and your journey and I think you are really getting in touch with this vibe.

      I love to watch kids play… they fascinate me. Mostly I like getting in there with them and playing. You learn so much from kids. Well maybe not learn, you remember!

      Thanks for sharing!

  • AnnKim24

    I love this blog girl everything you said was so true

    • Thanks girl! I’m gonna try to post once a week… random stuff, whatever is on my heart. Thanks for reading!

  • My childhood memories seem to revolve overwhelmingly around the sea, the chilly English North Sea, that is. Clambering over rocky shorelines, peering into rock pools, and (guiltily) nudging limpets from their resting place with a well aimed and harsh punt of a scuffed shoe…

    • Awe David… isn’t that the best… disturbing little crabbies and hermits! LOL Very sweet memories. So when is the last time you did this???

  • Emily

    I love looking back at my childhood and think… “dayummm if were to do this now it would’nt be a good look” lol.. i mean some of the stuff i’d rather not do again like roller skating down the steps and injuring myself just a lil, cry just a lil and do it again haha…I think when we “grow up” we are more inclined to hold back, kids have no inhibitions and they’re so free… adulthood is taken a lil too serious for my liking sometimes… sometimes i want to go to my back garden and scream/sing at the top on my lungs like i did with my sisters when we were lil in the middle of the night haha.. that aint happening anytime soon haha…
    So your question Natalie, has adult awareness has held you back from doing something… Yes… def… it sucks a lil but atleast we can hold onto those memories and relive some of them maybe once in a while haha…

    • Ha ha Emily! So funny! I want you to go into your garden and scream for joy, OK?! That’s this week’s assignment. Truthfully tho, I think that if adult awareness helps you from breaking your neck, this is good, but if it keeps you from joy, then it’s time to go back to the past and mine the good from it and perhaps re-incorporate it into the now. Thanks for sharing!

  • dcallen

    I’m an artist and everyone knows we never grow up no matter how old we become….

  • Not sure what happens. Trying to figure that one out myself. 😛
    By the way, the black text on this dark background (in the comments) makes it hard to see what is being written.

    • I’m changing the theme over. Seems there was a glitch somewhere!

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