As children a theme in our life is about authority, access, and power over. Having access to a room in the house so I can call it my own, power over siblings, having authority to make the choice of what to eat or what to do any given day…which all sounds so malevolent, but really its just wanting to be adult. At some point, when we reach the age of adulthood, we actually gain the power we’ve been wanting and then realize it’s not all carnival rides and cotton candy. With authority comes responsibility. But that’s another subject for a later post.
So the assumption is that once we become adults we leave behind all the issues we had as children and we move on to other challenges. But what if we don’t? I have been in situations where people in authority just sat blankly and said “I don’t know” every time they were asked “what should we do” in a critical situation. They have reverted to the little child that has no power even though they are the boss. I have also experienced a grown person having a very young child tantrum when asked to do something because from where they were they were experiencing “You’re not the boss of me!” just like a very small child. It’s startling when you are confronted by it. It will always seem familiar but you might not be able to place it at first because you don’t expect spectacularly age specific reactions from otherwise competent and socially functional adults.
But there you are. Age doesn’t really mean adult. It’s just age. Some children are adults at 3 and some adults will remain small children throughout their lives. Today is a good day to look at the people around you and count your blessings that they are the wonderful people that they are. And if you have people around you that are throwing tantrums, perhaps its time to take yourself for a time out, have some coffee or ice cream. You deserve it.