It’s not an easy question to answer. I mean even beyond the stereotypical adolescent angst I think there comes a certain point once you’ve molded a personal history that you start chronicling in the way you see yourself.
Of course as an obsessive Freudian I can’t help but insist that your long lost days of innocence count a great deal towards your mental landscape. Yet, fixations aside, there’s certainly a point that arrives later on where you start to think you’ve become an individual, no longer grasping at the coattails of once intimidating heroes. They could be teachers, domineering friends or parents if you’re the type.
Eventually, or hopefully, people come to adopt an internal monologue that after steering widely to escape childhood inadequacies, or happiness for that matter, becomes that notion of self. A self portrait that you try to add on onto and where you conveniently paint over the missteps.
Of course one risks asking questions that you can never really answer but I can’t help but feel, that this birth of image also kicks off that slow end of all the time you had. Don’t you feel it too? You were once a child and the days stretched into grand tales and unbearable agonies that last a lifetime. Then one day you’ve looked back and see an alarming number of years seem to have been slipped into your life while you where busy.
There’s no one to blame, maybe the secret is to never stop growing but I feel that running away from an inevitable fate that always looms over you. Besides what can you learn if you’re running away?
That aside, I feel like I found a voice I liked somewhere in my second year of College. The phantoms of the past were sufficiently soothed by whatever revelations and greatly exaggerated self discoveries I insisted were enough. Though there were still cringe inducing missteps I feel like there’s a consistent personality that’s weathered any challenges to my idea of who I am.
I don’t think it’ll come crashing down anytime soon. I don’t even known if that adult transfiguration ever happens to any but the most exceptional of cases. I look forward to hearing other answers to the same question, do share.