Sitting at the pub with some friends on Friday night looking around, i saw this old man in shorts pulled up too high, a knitted jumper that his wife had obviously made him, long socks with sandals,and a schooner in hand, the thing that amused me the most about this elderly man, other than his cliche old man attire was the fact that poking out from just under his shorts line and on his hands where the remnants of a life gone bye, the faded pigment of tattoo ink. It got me thinking about how the things we do whilst we're young impact our lives when we're older, and i can admit, permanent things like tattoos and piercings do physically change your appearance but they don't actually change who you are, and most of the time there are experiences or meaning behind those additions that create memories, much like the youth of today's 'childish actions', that may lead to success or failure in any situation.
I look around at my friends and well, we all have piercings, and or tattoos, we belong to a generation of 'bingedrinkers and designer drugs', but realistically each generation has there own form of alcohol and drug abuse, its just it keeps progressing to become worse with each new generation as the rules get tighter, each generation has their own identity, however when you really look at it, the point in my life that i have now reached so did my parents at some stage, that point where the world opened up and there were so many possibilities to be explored, and so many parental restraints to hold them back, I'm not just talking about being told 'NO', I'm talking about that disappointed look or tone of voice, the lectures and the post action speeches, that somewhere in amongst all the action specific details comes things like, 'you should have known better' or 'I was young once too' and 'im just trying to help you'. I realise that my parents in particular, are still learning the ropes of parent hood, because they've never been parents before me, and i realise that they don't want to do the things their parents did, or they don't want me to make certain mistakes, but they were young too and i know that they wanted to make their own mistakes and memories, and they wanted to live their lives and at some point their parents stopped them, or , even worse they were disappointed in them. So when i look at it, this whole parent, child growing up situation is a vicious cycle that starts with your birth and progresses from there on until the birth of your own child.
I am willing to accept that what my parents did was in the past, and a fair while ago, and what i am doing now is the present and currently relevant, however i refuse to acknowledge the suggestion that i am to young to know what i am doing, because i am well aware of the consequences of my actions, i know that if i go swimming at the beach at dusk i have the potential to get eaten my a shark, but i also know that if i can stand and see my feet and there are still surfers out i should be relatively safe, i am aware that tattoos are permanent and some people don't like them, but more and more people are accepting them and in my opinion they are also a form of art and personal expression.
My point is, that at some point in both parent and child life there has to be an acceptance of singular identity for all involved. My other point is that i am grateful for the way my parents have raised me, they've made me the person i am today, tattoos, piercings, childish habits an all. I especially thank my mum, for giving me strength and determination, and for showing me that there is so much to be explored. So now that i have finished school, i start my whole new adventure with my own identity.