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Sunday, October 5, 2014

What Would You Say to Your 8 Year-Old Self?

I just finished watching Disney's, "The Kid" with Bruce Willis and enjoyed it just as much this time as the half-dozen or so other times I've watched it. The movie poses an important question and always makes me wonder how if I knew then what I know now, how much different would my life have been?

Everyone wants to think they would have made smarter choices but the older I get, the more I speculate that this may not be the case. We make conscious decisions based on the belief system that is instilled in many of us at a very early age. Sometimes, it takes a few decades before we can either overcome what we were taught or figure out that maybe we should have been paying more attention.

Thinking back, I was actually asked to join a critique group more years ago than I care to claim while attending a book signing. I declined. I had an old car, two babies at home and a lot of responsibilities. I'd gotten a personal day off of work to attend the signing. Did I miss an opportunity that day because I didn't realize that if I'd only asked for a little more help at home, I might have become a little more serious about my writing a little sooner?

If I had realized it at the time, would I have warned my 8 year-old self to pay closer attention, be braver and believe in my dreams if I'd had the chance? I'm not sure that at the ripe old age of 28, I would have understood what was happening. At the end of the movie, both the 40 year old adult and the 8 year old child are confronted with their older self, the guy who flies a plane, has a wife and a dog named Chester. Everything the 8 year old had ever wanted.

At 40, Bruce Willis' character finally understood what had been holding him back. The writer's were spot on, that's an age when I think many of us start questioning what we've done with our lives. At 40 I would have told my 8 year old self not to be afraid to pursue her dreams, no matter how uncomfortable that made people. That being strong had nothing to do with gender or physical presence.


Whatever your age now, what would you tell your 8 year old self that might make life a little easier, or at least more understandable?

Until next month,

Happy Reading!
Paris Brandon


12 comments:

Sandy said...

Paris, I think all of us second guess our choices through life, but it is what it is.

Possibly, we would have done things differently if we knew what we know now then. I'm not sure it would have made a difference.

Paris said...

I think the fantasy to believe that there is one defining moment in your life that made you the person that you are is a little over-reaching but it made for a very cute movie.

Cara Marsi said...

I would have told my 8-year-old self the same as you would have--to not be so afraid to pursue my dream. And also not worry so much about what others think of me. And to have more self-respect. It took almost a lifetime to learn these things, but maybe that's what it's all about, learning as you go. I think sometimes about going back in time and changing things I did or didn't do, but if you change one thing, other things change, the domino effect. Maybe it's best to leave the past alone.

Tina Donahue said...

I knew what I wanted and didn't want when I was eight. Never had any doubt or guilt. Back then when someone tried to push me in a direction I didn't want I told them to back off and if they liked that direction so much then they should be pursuing it for themselves. Leave me out of the equation. I've always boogied to my own beat, no one else's. I don't apologize. I don't try to fit in. No one should. Be who you were born to be. :)

Paris said...

Cara,
I can see where changing something in the past would have the domino effect. Maybe the secret is to just keep going forward and learning as we go.

Paris said...

Tina,
I wish I'd of had your nerve! I was always worried about what someone else thought and didn't concentrate on what I wanted. Good for you:)

jean hart stewart said...

At eight I was still a mixed up kid after my father's death. Don't know what I could have done differently as I tried to help my mother as much as I could. Could have been more sympathetic to my sister, though. Don't really care for those years...

Janice Seagraves said...

I would have said to keep your head up and look around you more. Keep your dreams close and be stubborn. And it's okay not to smile.

Janice~

Paris said...

Jean,
Losing a parent so young must have been devastating. I'm so sorry.That would have been a tough time, no doubt.

Paris said...

Janice,
I hear you about keeping your dreams close. I let too many people talk me out of mine.

Lynda Bailey said...

Thoughtful post, Paris. Thanks for sharing! ;)

Paris said...

Hi Lynda,

Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment:)

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