The Art of Growing Up

I have a confession to make. By no means a big one, but a confession no less. I never planned to grow up. Like, ever.

Adulthood was this large, distant concept that I both admired, tried to emulate to a certain degree, but ultimately ignored in the hope that it would go away. I was determined to be mature without the responsibility, hoping that I could remain a child throughout my entire life.

I still do hope that I maintain the optimism and general hopefulness that I still cherish in my youth, and that I never lose my love for the true gems in children’s entertainment, but fact is, time wait’s for no man. Or woman, in this case.

I’m not getting any younger, and the future I once dreamed about is slowly slipping into the present. Reaching the age of eighteen was this huge mental shock for me. It took me ages to adjust to the fact that I was legally an adult, though I by no means felt or even acted like one. Nineteen wasn’t so big, but now I’m facing a number that down-right frightens me.

Twenty. I’m going to be twenty years old.

I mean, I still have a few months to go, but fact is it’s next. I still tried to ignore it, but God has a way of intervening when we get stubborn and refuse to face the facts.

I thank Him eternally for giving me a college tutor who, for once, doesn’t take my nonsense. One of my biggest flaws is procrastination. I would sooner browse the internet all day, admiring the art of others, than draw something myself. I would rather read until I collapse from starvation than write – and yet I still dream big. Life just doesn’t work that way.

All my life I would miss deadlines and never think twice about it, but for once I’m not only being held responsible (which isn’t new), but I actually care. It’s easy with family (sorry Dad), because it’s harder to lose their respect over something as simple as being late. If I don’t get a picture into them when I said I would, I just say sorry and move on with life.

It’s suddenly a different story when you realize that skill alone is not enough to slide by on. For once I actually stopped and not only realized that I had to quit being such a lay-about (also not new), but if I didn’t stop being such a baby, I was going to start suffering. I began to realize that not only was I destroying the opinions others had of me, but I was destroying my dreams.

Exactly because I refused to stop procrastinating, I shrugged the habit off and thought it couldn’t be helped. I stopped dreaming big and stopped caring altogether. I lost sight of my goals and as a result went through a hellish month of staring at every project I laid my hands to, wondering what was the point? Why was I drawing if I had given up on arts school? Why was I writing when I didn’t honestly believe that publication was an immediate goal?

So at long last I’m turning my life around. I’m getting myself out of this rut and I’m throwing open the windows to let some air in. Frankly, I don’t care how much I still have to learn in art. I’ve wanted to animate since I was thirteen years old and I’m not going to let a silly thing like a lack of ambition get in the way.

I’m still facing the consequences of a life time of procrastination, and I‘m learning every day that habits die hard, but I’m determined to beat this, even if I have to drop an anvil on its head.

Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

About Zoë Demaré

Zoe Demare was born in England and spent the greater part of her restless adolescence in Holland. She is currently working towards her BA in creative arts, an achievement that she prays becomes a reality sometime in 2011. Daydreaming is her favourite pastime, and when she isn't doing that, she's writing or drawing. Her greatest ambitions are to travel, get a novel published, and make a living out of comics. More than anything else though, she just wants to follow God's plan for her life. In 2009 she started writing her 'first real novel' (the actual first attempt was pretty dire), and is still trying to get it finished.

10 comments on “The Art of Growing Up

  1. Do what your heart tells you to. And if it’s from God, it’ll work. If it’s not, then he’ll put in you a desire to do something else. I’ve discovered that following God’s will for your life is not about being able to define his “call,” because he may have different tasks waiting as you grow. Follow him in this season, and he’ll let you know when it’s time to move on to something else. You’ve just got to be willing to listen and to move.

    You write and draw for God… no one else. Who cares about publication, right?

    • Amen to that. Though I get frustrated occasionally at what feels like a lack of progress, it can’t compare to the sheer bliss and joy of just working, knowing I’m creating for a loving God and that He has it all under control, that I can dream big again and He’ll take care of all the details.

  2. I am so proud of you, Zoe. You have risen(or is it fallen) to the level of anvil. Our baby girl is a woman now. I am gushing with silliness and can’t wait to share. 😛

    Seriously, you did a great job on Alpha Redemption’s book cover. Growing up is a hard thing but please do not lose that wonderful creativity by becoming too serious. I lost mine for a while because I let life run me into the ground. Whew! Good thing my kids pulled me out before it was too late. 😀

    • Thank you. (x You have officially made my day.

      I’m pretty sure I’d die if I lost my creativity – just crawl up into a corner and fade away. My parents would find me one day with cobwebs all over me and wonder what on Earth I was doing. Seriously though, you should give all your kids a big ol’ hug just for that, and maybe a few cookies. Cookies are always good. 😉

  3. Wait a minute! You’re about to be 20 and your concerned about being an adult?

    I’m 34 and I still think something went wrong somewhere.

    Wasting time on the Internet? Got it.
    Keeping busy looking at other people’s work than making my own? Got it.
    Looking at what I’m doing and realizing there’s no pay at the end of the week for it? Got it.

    Associating with like minded friends? Priceless.

    Stay a kid forever. Enjoy the Peter Pan life. Somehow we still live and breathe and exist and God provides our every basic need.

    Might as well have fun while it happens. Even if we’re broke.


    • XD Aw man, I couldn’t agree with you more. We have so little time on this Earth, it would be a crime shame to waste it all by being too serious and grown-up. Better to scrimp and save doing something I love than be rolling in the moola and hate every morning that comes my way.

      • I don’t think I’d hate it if I had moola. 😉 Then I could make my own rules and still do what I love. One of many reasons I work on business endeavors and not just my writing. 😉

        But whether one is broke or with a lot of moola, we should always keep the joy of the Lord and have some fun. 🙂

  4. Dearest Zoe,
    Listen to your co-writers! I am a few years down the road and, I still don’t want to grow up, always, always keep the youthful heart, life is hard enough. If they drop the “Anvil” on you,just slide out from under it and bounce right back up. Too many folk try to grab the “Anvil” and end up sinking down. You can heal from your wounds, but if you get too far down, it is very very hard to climb back up.

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