I can’t help but stop and wish I was a kid again when my world feels like it’s falling apart. I believe that we all have those “fantasy” lands we go to in times of hardship. Why do we tend to idealize childhood? Because in the moment it seems like a much simpler and more peaceful place to be, almost like an escape.
There’s a line from a Tupac Shakur song ‘Changes’ in which he says, “I’d love to go back to when we played as kids but things changed, and that’s the way it is.” Not only do things change, but they become more realistic. As a child, we aren’t mature enough and knowledgable to know about the “real world.” A child’s biggest worry can range from the flavor ice cream he/she wants to monsters under the bed.
If I really take the time to think about how simple and carefree my childhood was, it turns out there was more to it being “simple” than I thought. I remember there were endless nights when I couldn’t sleep because I thought there was a clown in my closet. I wouldn’t enjoy going in the pool for fear of my older brother playing “shark” and drowning me.
So sure, as a kid our responsibilities and stressors are less mild than when we become adults, but we’ll always have our plates full. As children our parents tell us to grow up and stop acting like a baby, and then we wish to be a baby all over again. It’s almost like a cycle. We can idealize childhood as much as we want, but even children don’t have it as easy. Every once in a while, we’re allowed to dream and escape to that “fantasy” land, and then it’s back to reality.