This creative writing piece was written by Eliza Reid-Perks, when she was 15 years old, about the overwhelming and intense nature of adolescence.
For about five months when I was nine I cried every day. Always just before I went to sleep, sometimes during the day as well but always when I was lying in bed with the lights off, totally exposed in the darkness. I had no idea why this was happening to me, the weather had very suddenly, very drastically, changed. One minute everything was fine; it was a sunny, non-rescript morning with a gentle breeze and then bam!
The most destructive hurricane my entire ecosystem had ever faced.
I wasn’t going through anything massively traumatic,
except growing up.
I had a fully formed sense of self, an independent identity, and that
Freaked. Me. Out.
What I was experiencing was a mini adolescence according to Rudolf Stiener. I'm not sure about the truth behind a lot of his child development theories but this one resonates with me. It’s the only feeling that’s ever come close to the constantly tempestuous life I lead now, as a 15-year-old girl. Maybe it was just the start of puberty, but I think it was something bigger, a self realization.
Everything is big at the moment, overwhelming, all-consuming. And it doesn’t seem like that’s going to change, if anything this feeling or rather infinite, rapidly wavering string of feelings will intensify.
This is a storm of the next level.
Those bedtimes I spent wailing, which were bad enough, are now entire evenings sitting on the sofa in a state of near panic. I love my parents and I’m so grateful to them, we have a brilliant relationship but I have minor fallouts with them almost every single day. I’ll get home after school and dance training and be extremely irritable. I make the most horrible comments without even thinking and then feel instantly guilty, it’s not who I am.
The first full-blown fight I had with my mum was one year ago, on new-years-eve. I can’t even remember what it was about. All I know is that it was on the stairs and we were screaming at each other, completely screaming, every word she shouted seemed to tear away a layer of my flesh, hitting me again and again until she reached my bone. And I’m sure I did the same to her. We were both consumed by this beast, probably with anger that her little girl was slipping away too fast for her to even realize it, until that moment. And me by a wave of something that felt evil. I was possessed. I was terrified that this was an omen for how the year ahead would be.
Thankfully it hasn’t been nearly as horrible and that remains one of the worst arguments I’ve ever had. But this is a time that everyone goes through and feelings and experiences that most people face and yet we never talk about them.
Emotions can take over but I try to remind myself to find the eye of the storm, the place in which everything is whirling around you but you are still and grounded, able to see all these emotions and look at them objectively... not immune by any means, but equally not consumed within the mess that is adolescence.
My teen years, so far, have been draining, fun, lonely, messy, and EMOTIONAL but above all they’ve been exciting, everything’s big because it’s all new and it can be daunting but we must remember that this will pass, so cherish that excitement. All the new stuff, I imagine, will get old and boring all too quickly.
Written by Eliza Reid-Perks