By Izzy Gravano, TIWP Student
It hasn’t always been An Exciting Time To Be A Teenager. Middle school and high school are hells on earth. Adults see you coming and they turn the corner. Or they cover their ears before you’ve opened your mouth. As teens, we are blamed because we don’t know who we want to become. Independence is within reach but not yet achieved. The title of Teen means immediate defamation. To a certain degree, I accepted this notion that my teenage self wasn’t the best version of myself, purely because the world told me it wasn’t. Teenagers are expected to act more “adult” than “child” but in reality, “child” is what we truly are.
For the past two years it’s been a constant chorus of cries from the adults as it appears as if the world is ending. Our caretakers are too upset and confused to take a moment to think about how it feels to be a kid right now. And I don’t blame them for that. But as a kid, it doesn’t make me feel optimistic when my role models break down or the people I turn to for comfort have no comfort to offer. Part of that is something I need to work on as I begin to enter adulthood. But on the other hand, it is not my responsibility to be the strong one.
I’m listening and I’m watching and I’m learning. I’ve realized I have no choice but to take responsibility. So now, I think it is An Exciting Time to be a Teenager. I don’t feel as powerless as I once did. I don’t need to wait for a day to maybe change the world, because that day can be today. It is true that joining forces is empowering. I used to despise my age, but I am young, and stable, and ready to make the world a better place.
So please, brand me as Teenage Girl. Because being a teen is enough for me. And I hope the world now knows that does not mean my voice is less worthy of your ears.