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The idea for this article came to me while I was waiting for my plane to take off, heading back to Kingston after a weekend at home. I felt weirdly at peace sitting on the plane, surrounded by strangers. The sound of a child chattering from a few rows back mixed with the conversation coming from the couple in front of me felt familiar and normal. I realized then that I had outgrown the old me, the girl who felt anxious whenever traveling alone because she was so used to being under the protection of her parents, the girl who was afraid to strike up a conversation with a stranger, and the list goes on...

  • I now prefer aisle seats over window seats on a plane because I value leg space more than having the chance to peek out the window during take-off and landing.

  • I don’t exactly recall when, but I began to venture into the non-fiction part of bookstores, even picking out books from the career section every now and then.

  • Wearing a pair of knee-high rain boots no longer means stepping in every single puddle that I come across.

  • Instead of catching myself checking how my Tamagotchi is doing, I find myself checking the news or the stock market.

  • I no longer feel nervous when ordering food at a restaurant.

  • Losing my mom in the grocery store suddenly doesn’t seem as terrifying as before.

  • The things that used to be on my to-do-list are replaced with mundane but sometimes onerous items such as “do laundry”, “grocery shopping”, or “submit job application.”

  • Recently, I suddenly felt the urge to clean out my closet and fill it with more mature-looking pieces, so I can look more put together on a daily basis.

  • This one sounds very sad, but I no longer get super excited when a new animated film by Disney is released.

  • I went from being the tomboy who swore to my mom that I would never wear a dress nor a skirt as long as I breathed, to the girl who genuinely enjoys trips to Sephora with her friends and spends way too many hours experimenting with her hair.

I could go on and on.

When I first thought about all the changes I’ve gone through, I was terrified. I was overtaken by grief, because you see, I have always despised change. As much as I admire trailblazers and want to be one, I tend to be content with the status quo. I guess another way to frame this is that I am great at spotting the beauty and positive side of a current situation.  

However, at the end of the day, changes take place regardless of our sentiments. We are constantly changing; the people around us are constantly changing. Maybe it is time to embrace the passage of time and to celebrate our growth.

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Julia Li

Queen's U

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