Kicked Out

When you’re young, there are lots of expectations put on you. Parents expect chores to be done and grades up to standard. Teachers expect good behavior and attentive students. Friends expect you to be there for them and to fit into the group dynamic. And society has its own set of expectations and rules too numerous to list.

As I’m getting older, I’m starting to feel like some of those expectations are lessening. It’s a little easier without the teachers and classmates I used to see everyday. As an adult, I have less friends and my parents have less expectations of me. This transition has been hard on me as a former star student.

I’m weaning myself off of the need for reassurance and praise from the people I know. At first, I felt like the people who cared about me cared no longer. I misinterpreted the lack of usual expectations to lack of love. It was lonely.

My loved ones still have some expectations for me, but perhaps not as many. It was not done out of malice. It was so I could grow and become mature enough to make my own decisions. A kick out of the nest per se.

The reality is that it was a lifting of restriction. And that is freeing. I have been given this gift of freedom. And now, outside of so many expectations, I can do anything I want. As if that’s not slightly frightening. But freedom is not what we expect it to be. Insecurity is parked next to freedom and it likes to travel alongside.

Next to security is comfort, but as nice and cozy as comfort can be, there are dangers to getting too comfortable. Lack of challenge seems to lessen character and comfort can lead to laziness if you’re not careful.

In theory, I’d take the freedom with insecurity. But realistically, that’s easier said than done. Especially when insecurity rears its nasty, pointed head.

I must learn to fly. That’s the only way to feel the free air against my face. One step at a time. Just a little closer to the edge. Past the fear lies my destiny. And I want more than this nest of twigs and dirt.