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I once asked my father what it was like to be an adult. Out of the numerous answers he would have responded with, he said, “Well, I don’t know! Something like getting everything going by getting things done…” The vagueness in that statement had a certain excelsior to it – moving upwards. Choosing to look up when things are at rock bottom, preventing your tears from streaming. In fact, you do not use tears to get what you want. So I left it at that; just like most of us don’t like the idea of sitting there for an hour listening to a lecture they’d have avoided in the first place by saying, okay.

As I would have come to learn later, when growing up, you do things that would rather be done by someone else but since you are also ‘someone else’ to someone, you have no choice. I tend to think this is where our troubles begin. The I don’t know part blew me away up until I came to be asked of the same by my closest friends. My subconscious did me a solid, copy-and-paste. It is insinuated, through broken pieces of experiences from a variety of people, that the art of growing up is difficult and filled with responsibilities. I’m not here to change the script but just to give you a few insights into it, a sort of perspective.

All our lives we can’t wait to grow up so that we get to dictate what to do. We go to bed when we want. We hang out with whomever wherever we feel like. Probably that seems fun. We call that freedom at some point. However, a recent chat with a friend told me something different. Freedom tags along responsibility with it, ipso facto, consequences can’t wait to turn a stern face at us to savour its ‘Thanos’ moment I am inevitable. However whenever responsibility is mentioned, we just want the earth to swallow us. Some get into it and doubt the necessity in the middle. Some see it through to the end. We all want to be the last guy.

Life has no approved manual despite all the constructive noise motivational speakers peddle. In fact, there’s no manual. It is a fire that is lit and hastened by firewood to keep it ablaze. You must have been told you’re unique by parents, friends or maybe even God. Unique problems require unique solutions so go your own way. Adopt a liking to your actions in growth. Take small steps in the night. No one knows about tomorrow, so don’t die without living today wholly. No one snaps their finger to a room as clean as a library. If you ever tried pulling out strings from a sweater, you can’t pull two strings at the same time lest you nip your finger.

Do things systematically but not by the book. Your brain is clever enough to queue the urgent matters to those that may take a while. Step by step, pick up the dirty clothes on your bed and under, place them in the laundry bag. Spread your bed nicely and change the bedding whenever necessary. By and by, you’ll realise that things fall into place and the gloom slowly melts away to a smile of satisfaction. Our mistakes lie in attempting everything. That’s why your exam paper is always numbered. It is why you weren’t born an adult. You age slowly from mere seconds to golden years. Trust the process.

Adulting is a gift that can easily become a curse. A gift is granted for enjoyment. There’s a moment you experience a surge of emotions to the extent we tear. Our growth is meant to be thrilling, enjoying the little satisfactions that string along; doing things that make us happy; building our character, essentially, existing within your space. Live within your means to avoid unnecessary pressures that build up from association.

The curse is you’re responsible for what happens to you.You bear tears when shit gets real. You dance too. You always bear the consequences of your actions. The next endeavour is always upon you. You have the ink pen. Queue them, the smile is yours as you tick off the list. At this age, you are only responsible for yourself thus your time is not split to anyone you haven’t slotted in. If it is not worth it, don’t fight it. Your life has to be progressive. Always moving. In a world that changes every day, I am fills the tongues of many proclaiming a truth they know. Find your own truth and live by it diligently. If it gets hard, you are growing, don’t take it to heart so hard, you can always take a step back, recollect and then get back up and fight once more.

By Innocent Sirima


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  1. Not to be dramatic but, ‘Do things systematically but not by the book,’ has changed my life. I’m now learning to trust the process.
    Thank you for this amazing article.

  2. “You age slowly from mere seconds to golden years” I really love that lone!

  3. Winnie Irungu on

    👌…Reminds me of a book I read earlier this year by the name…First,we make the beast beautiful by Sarah Wilson