Age is a number. Is it an important number? I don’t think so. To me, the only thing age says about a person is how long they’ve been alive. It doesn’t say anything about the things they’ve experienced, the things they’ve learned, the things they value, etc. Those are the things that are important to me.
As the youngest child in my generation (and also the only girl), I grew up surrounded by older kids. In school was probably the only time I was around kids my age. But I went to private school, so to see most of my friends, we needed to make plans during a time that our parents were available to drive us somewhere. I also didn’t live in a community with lots of children. We did have family friends down the street with children close to the same age, but again, we needed to make plans with our parents. Walking to each other’s houses was too dangerous because of the winding road we lived on. Basically, I was stuck hanging out with my older brother, and older cousin when he visited in the summer.
I always assumed this is why I never really cared what age anyone was. I always hung out with older kids.
When we moved to a nicer area a few years later, and transferred into public school, I was able to meet and hang out with more kids my age. Honestly, that didn’t last long. All through elementary and middle school I tended to make friends with the older kids on the bus. I did have a few friends in my grade, but more in older grades, and even a few in younger grades. Once high school started, I made even more friends in different grades. I even had some friends from summer camps and other activities that were already in college. Clearly, I never cared about age.
My band director said something to the class one day, and I don’t remember the context, but it made sense to me. He said that age does not equal maturity. Certainly you expect that older people will be more mature, as they’ve have more time to experience things and learn from mistakes, but that is not always the case. I went on to figure out that people of all ages have had different experiences and have learned different things. It is experience that creates maturity, not age.
To this day, I have friends ranging from a few years younger than me to many, many years older. When I meet someone new, I don’t ask their age. I don’t care. Something can be learned from people of all ages, and anyone can be your friend.
Find the Prompt here.