As I slowly advance to my 22nd birthday (Please spare your “You’re a baby” insults. I’m well aware…), I often reflect on the childhood memories and opportunities that I all too often took for granted. I’ve grown to learn that the juice box drinking, tax exempt lifestyle that I had previously rocked, in addition to my Little Mermaid t-shirt and sparkly tights, was not only the most vibrant times of my innocent days, but also the seemingly prehistoric times I regularly long for above all in my times of heartache and stress. As I previously believed that managing to listen to my portable CD-player on the bumpy school bus would be the most of my worries throughout my life, I was in for quite the rude awakening; one in which the acclimation process was not as quick as I had hoped for. However, despite my growing age, there are many childhood lessons and rules that I have incorporated into my seemingly sad and all too often boring adult life in hopes of keeping the goofy toothed, grinning little girl I once was alive and well. And while these are essentially my own personal rules and epiphanies, I can almost guarantee you have or continuously do partake in these beliefs or juvenile actions.
1. Naps Were Under-Appreciated
The words “nap” was equivalent to grotesque nails harshly abrading down a brand new chalk board to our juvenile ears. For me, naps meant that my sister and I was corralled like animals into separate rooms, eliminating any form of communication. And although we did attempt to create an aggressive morse code inspired language by pounding on the joining walls in hopes of relaying top secret messages, those efforts were quickly diminished after the first round of spankings. My Germany born mother would use this tranquil time to do what any mother with excessively loud and sassy twins would do: watch her favorite soap operas. I mean, it’s only logical for a woman to escape her own stressful like by indulging in the impractical drama of “tv’s most beautiful,” right?… Fast forwards 16 years later, and here I sit desperately wishing that the plethora of naps I chose to not utilize would essentially “roll over” into my adult sleep fund, allowing me hours upon hours of coveted napping opportunities. Those “all-nighters” that I so savagely threatened my mother with have subsequently transformed into what I like to call “all-dayers”. These days, a task from hell itself, entails a full day of work and activities without the slightest opportunity for catching any Z’s. Simply put, naps are the key to happiness.
2. The 5-Second Rule Is Basically A Commandment
As a child, the 5-second rule was more of a boys game to justify eating skittles off just about anything. While I had grown up giving a big ole “Eww!” to any boy that so much as committed the act of eating disease ridden floor food within a 50 foot radius, I can’t help but admire those repulsive boys, now probably even more repulsive men, for this genius logic. I, Vanessa Kash, will be the very first to admit that I utilize the 5-second rule (sometimes tacking on an extra second or two) on a daily basis, from dropping an edible item onto my work desk or even into the unknown depths of my driver seat while on the road. If anything, germs build character and no good story starts with “I very neatly ate my pack of cashews without a spilling a one.” In all honesty, when it comes down to sacrificing an overpriced chicken nugget because it briefly made contact with the not so wiped down fast food restaurant table or, yes, even the grungy restaurant floor, you will undeniably bite the bullet and eat that sucker for the hardworking, blue collar class because you know damn well money doesn’t grow on trees. After all, you did just spent one hours worth of pay for those ten bites of timed happiness.
3. A Juice Box Is A Great Chaser
If you haven’t tried it, I highly suggest you do; Capri Sun has never tasted better! Those pouches of pure cavities and joy make for a great followup on that pregame shot! Props to Capri Sun and other various juice boxes for continuing to promote smiles and memories we will never remember in our now adult lives!
4. Ice Cream: All Day Every Day
No explanation needed.
5. Snacks Still Boost My Mood
I can’t be the only one! We’ve all been on that memorable family trip or experience, whether to the zoo or even a quick vacation, in which a large backpack was toted around carrying enough snacks and water to feed a large tribe. Being a high energy child, I relied on various snacks throughout the day to not only keep my mouth moving, but to keep my little self as happy as can be. My mother was notorious for keeping granola bars in her purse because she damn well knew that once I reached the point of hunger, my inner animal took over. Unfortunately, that inner animal is one I’ve yet to grow out of, seeing that a snack every few hours has continued to keep my mood at a stable, non-murderous state.
6. Disney Movies Fix Everything
Well, for the duration of the fairytale, that is. As a little girl, I often found myself attempting to defy my parents’ adamant rule of “No Scary Movies”. However, I found that I had much more courage during daylight hours than I did as the night crept throughout the house. The Seed Of Chucky had an entirely new level of imminent fear at night, prompting my frightened self to tip-toe into the living room in the mere hours of the night and flick on a comforting fairytale, The Little Mermaid being my top pick. Now 21, I can assure you that the “Kids” section of my Netflix account tends to be used slightly more often than any other section for the pure reason that Disney movies have continued to be just as comforting for me now as they were when I was a child.
7. Saying “I’m Sorry” Really Does Help
Now, I refuse to make the bold statement that an apology fixes all because, despite what we have been grown up being told, they don’t. Nobody is mandated or required to accept an apology. However, I’ve learned that accepting an apology, as well as a situation, for what it is tends to aid in getting over the hurdle that is healing. As a wise man once said, “Just because you forgive does not mean you must forget”. Yet, a genuine “I’m sorry” is an exceptional place to start.