I was explaining something I made as part of an art project yesterday and it’s bringing back memories of what my childhood was like.
I lived in South Wales (and I still do today), and the house I lived in was great. I did spend some time going to America and back for 5 years. I had a room which, between 2002 and 2007 (in other words, between when I was 8 and when I was 13), was decorated like a jungle, and I created a jungle environment with various locations and a story which I could put myself in. That lasted until my parents split and me, my mother, my siblings, and our pets, moved into a new house. From there, we could feel the old days dying before our eyes. Things are better now, and we could still have some of the old ways alongside the new, but let’s face it, things’d never be the same again.
As a kid, the three things I cared about most were video games, food (I liked to eat and I never got fat), and nature and animals, particularly the jungle, Africa, or the outback. Oh, and Cartoon Network. I was also into the four elements as a kid, I guess mainly through Pokemon and Lego’s Bionicle (which I most of you who are reading this will not remember). Because of that, I would research the concepts and it would lead into mythology, astrology, and even mysticism to a small degree. I’d often try to pin myself as water, earth, or wind, little realizing that I was closer to fire.
What do I mean? Well, despite my so-called moralism, I was pretty stubborn, kinda bossy with my brother and definitely quite competitive with him, I could even get angry. I was also pretty energetic and often hyper, and sometimes did crazy things. I try to be a saint, but it didn’t really work out for me, and it just wasn’t me. I may have been a Christian as a kid, but it was all a show and done only out of fear of punishment, death, and hell (though I was at one point dumb enough to think praying to Jesus would save the rainforests; I’m glad those days are over). My aversion to swearing, violence, guns, and other mature things I would later like was all imposed on me by the adults in my life, and when my brother and I played a violent flash game involving stick men (which was recommended to me by one of my primary school mates), our sister narked on us, so to speak, and we were in deep shit. Eventually, as I was growing older, I gradually broke free of the chains artificially imposed on me and took a good look at who I really was, from my childhood years to now, and embraced all that made me who I am.
The music I liked was video game music, mostly from the Sonic series. Didn’t care about popular music. Only as I got older and became a teenager did I start exploring music outside video games, and I listened to songs from different kinds of genres. I knew what I liked, and I usually liked rock music, probably owing to the Sonic series. I still listened to video game music, even arrangements of songs from video games. Eventually, I moved on to be more aligned to heavy metal music, in addition to hard rock which I already kinda liked. Oddly enough, I experienced rock music in video games and arrangements of songs from video games, and probably randomly encountered heavy rock in video games and remixes (I think in movies too), so it actually seems natural, just I didn’t know a lot about genres and didn’t care too much about bands till relatively recently.
The weird thing is I would spend time in the playground with the other kids when I was much younger, but as the teenage years rolled on I became more withdrawn and uninterested in the outside world, and only when I was closer to 18 would I start opening up again.
So, is there a connection between my childhood self and now? I think there is. I still have an affinity towards energy, pride, passion, and I still can be spontaneous. I still have some interest in nature, from a certain perspective and from an aesthetic stand point. I still care about video games. At heart, I’m not too different, but I’ve evolved considerably. I didn’t care for alcohol, cigarettes and drugs when I was a kid and I still don’t want anything to do with them now. In a way, all I’ve done over time is figured out how to react to a much larger world, either using my true feelings, or through eventual awareness of them, and progressing towards to what I like and what I am now based on myself and how I reacted to everything.
I have never truly changed, but rather evolved.