If you’ve ever painted your front door four different colors in three days, you’d know that it is a great opportunity for pondering. As I finished up the final coat (of the crisp white that I settled on after baffling my neighbors with yellows and purples and greens), I remembered something that my mom used to tell me all the time. “I want to be just like you when I grow up, Audrey.” I used to look at her like she had eight heads when she said that, because at the time it made no sense. She was grown up, I still had to ask permission to use the bathroom during the school day.
Now as I sit here wondering what on earth possessed me to spend twelve hours painting and repainting my door, I finally understand what she meant. It is not when we graduate or when we turn twenty one or when we buy our first house that we are grown up, it is whenever we decide to stop growing that we are grown up.
My mom, while very creative and unique, would sometimes be hesitant to paint a door a crazy color, because she didn’t want to hate it. I think the part of me that she wanted to have as she grew up was the lack of fear of creativity. The realization that you can always change, always fix. If we fear change, we fail to embrace it.
Maybe her life wasn’t the longest, but it sure was the widest.
I hope I always grow, but never grow up.