A kid at heart

April 21st, 2016


Hi there. My name is Carly, and on the outside, I look like any other 20-year-old basic white girl. I go to school at a university, drink way too many chai tea lattes and am a little bit more than slightly obsessed with my favorite red lipstick.


However, on the inside, I would probably more resemble an eight-year-old. On the inside, I color, play outside after school and eat mostly macaroni and cheese. However, I am not ashamed of this part of me in the slightest.


I love being a kid at heart. It makes me feel lighter and free of some of the responsibilities that plague me during harder times.


I dream big. One day, I see myself as the Press Secretary for the President of the United States. Think C.J. Craig a la “The West Wing,” but in a classy and stylish pencil skirt. The next day, I am sitting in a classroom surrounded by my students. I am throwing truth bombs about the real world all over the place, and my students are absolutely enthralled by what I am teaching them. Other days, I am at home. I take care of my kids and write novels that are known around the world.


Who knows if these dreams will come true or not? But that is the cool thing about dreams. They are yours and no one else’s. People can step on them, but no one can truly take away your dreams. So why not dream as big as you possibly can?


Because I am basically a kid, a huge part of my heart is carved out and dedicated to all things Disney. As I write this, Spotify is playing my fine-tuned “Dream a Dream” playlist, which is a collection of my favorite Disney songs. And, since you were wondering, it is fantastic.


I have also seen “Zootopia,” Disney’s latest animated feature, twice in theaters, because I am a child.


Disney is something that I think is special to everyone. We can all name our favorite (or top five, in my case) Disney movies, and we all know that the Disney Channel we grew up with was so much better than the Disney Channel that today’s kids are forced to watch (I mean, c’mon. “Dog with a Blog?” What the heck is that?)


But being a kid at heart has huge benefits. For example, I love unconditionally. Words are usually my weapon of choice, and I love using them to build people up instead of tearing them down. I love the rain and I love the sun, and I even love the snow (with the major exception of when it decides to come at the beginning of April).


Love is something that we all share. Even the most pessimistic of people love something. I am about to sound a little Beatle-esque, but I do believe that all we need is love.


I have always been curious and horrible at keeping secrets, which is something that used to get me in a lot of trouble, particularly when it came the endings to movies or surprise birthday parties.


I want to know how the world works and why some things happen. I want to know the motives behind actions and how those actions effect others. After all, isn’t asking a million questions better than asking none at all?


Today’s society forces kids to grow up so fast. And while this is happening, I think that people lose some of what is great about being a child: loving unconditionally, creativity, curiosity. Kindergarteners today are getting homework. When I was in kindergarten, I can remember getting off the school bus and running around outside with the rest of the neighborhood kids until the streetlights came on. That doesn’t happen as much anymore.


We all have a kid inside of us. It’s the part of us that gets excited when we see puppies or cupcakes or Lizzie McGuire. It’s the part of us that wonders why the sky is blue or why Tarzan doesn’t speak with a British accent (think about it: he was taught English by British people. So why does he have an American accent?)


I encourage each and every one of you to embrace your inner child. Watch Hercules on a rainy day instead of Saw IV. Fly a kite on the quad. Skip around your dorm rooms. You would be surprised at how happy you feel when you let go just a little bit.