Growing Pains -By Izzy Tiernan- teenager growing up

This gorgeous piece was kindly written for us by one of our Sambos, Izzy.

The chasm between being a teenage girl and an adult in your twenties is vast, lonely, and exciting. One second, you’re lying on the couch in your family home, and your mother is making the dinner in the kitchen, the immersion is on for your shower later and the rain outside does not worry you. The next moment, you’re trying to justify spending five euro on the nice pasta sauce and wondering if you just blend some tomatoes instead, will it taste the same, and then you may have enough left to buy your favourite chocolate bar. 

These changes come on in a heartbeat, and your body often does not have time to catch up. I still feel sometimes as if I’m ‘just a teenage girl’, and then I realise that I have people who rely on me, one of them being myself. But I still see the world as kind, and beautiful. I still stop to smell the blooming hydrangeas on my walk home, still treat myself to that overpriced coffee, and still giggle with my friends as if we were in school. These things, I believe, do not leave you in your twenties, although they may be repressed as you are forced to deal with uncertainty and seriousness of life. 

Sometimes when I am asked to make an important decision or am granted an amazing opportunity that little me could only have dreamed of, I panic. I think that I am still the lost fifteen-year-old I once was, unsure of who I am and where I am going. In nearly all of these moments of uncertainty, I can hear a small voice in my head with the answer or can feel my body tugging me in the direction I am meant to go. And then I remember how far I have come. That yes, I am still a teenage girl. I go on picnics with my friends and I love how I look fresh out of the shower with a new layer of tan. But I am also a professional, a vessel with years of experience and knowledge and growth that is irreplaceable.  And somehow, I am all this together. 

Growing Pains -By Izzy Tiernan- teenager growing up

I believe that there is a social renaissance happening, and it has been highlighted by the release of the new ‘Barbie’ film. We, as women, are realising that the little girls inside of us still need as much love as they did when we were five. We still crave to be seen and heard. We are realising that our mothers and grandmothers have a teenage girl inside of them, too. We are all experiencing growing pains, at every part of our lives. Yet we never lose the little girl whose hand needs to be held every now and again. 

As I cross the line into womanhood from girlhood, I want to honour my past self. I will do that by being kind, by realising when she is crying out for attention. When I need to rest, or play, or giggle, it is her who I will be doing it for. Because she is with me, in every important meeting, in every exam, holding my hand and trying to remind me to be kind to myself. We are growing together, and although the pain of hatching into a new stage of life feels endless, I know she will be with me every step of the way. 

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