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Inside Out

Who gave you permission to get so old?

Jeanne Sager
Posted 9/27/22

It has occurred to me that I have become a very specific sort of person when I run into teenagers or young adults who I’ve known for a very long time. 

You have almost definitely …

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Inside Out

Who gave you permission to get so old?

Posted

It has occurred to me that I have become a very specific sort of person when I run into teenagers or young adults who I’ve known for a very long time. 

You have almost definitely encountered this type of person at least a few times throughout your life. It’s always a person who you have known for much of your life and who was around during your formative years. 

It’s a person who you probably have not seen in a long time or haven’t seen since making some major changes to your appearance. 

This is the person who will have a very exaggerated response to seeing you but a response that centers around a very short list of comments.  

“Oh my Gawd, you’re so big!”

“No, no, no, how did this happen?”

“You’re making me feel so old!”

“I remember when you were this big” (said, of course, while holding one’s hand around knee height).

“Oh my, it just can’t be! Who told you you were allowed to grow up on us?”

“I remember when ...” (inserts memory of something done with them when they were too young to form lasting memories). 

There may be a few specifically embarrassing anecdotes shared and there will most definitely be gushing over how cute you were as a small child. 

You may be called by an older sibling or cousin’s name because this person will be in utter disbelief that you are not, in fact, said older sibling or cousin because once again, you cannot possibly be this old. No one gave you permission to be this grown, and holy moly, you are making them feel old. 

If any of this sounds like something you have said at any point in the past year or so, don’t worry – you’re likely too old for me to possibly say it to you. 

If you have been hearing this, on the other hand, watch out. I may have to add to the chorus. 

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