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The Inner Child

An Essay By Trevor Stone

December 1994, Freshman Year, New Vista High School

There is a small part of you that is often neglected. It has been with you since you were born. You have it. I have it. Jimi Hendrix had it, Bill Gates has it. And no, it's not the Force.

It's your inner child.

Yes, your inner child. When you were a child, you probably ran around with other kids, swing on the swing, slide down the slide, play tag, make believe that you had super powers, or other such "childish" things. And the important thing was, you had fun.

But now you're 16. You have tons of homework, you work after school, and in your spare time you talk to friends and generally "hang out." You have fun here and there.

In ten years you will probably have a job where you go to the office from 9-5, Monday through Friday, spend time with your spouse and kids, and figure out how you're going to pay the bills and look after your family. The definition of fun has slipped your cluttered mind.

In another 50 years, you'll be an old geezer living in a retirement home, talking to the other old geezers about your life, trying to remember if it was 42nd street or 24th street you lived on when you were 12, wishing you were young again so you could run and jump and play and, most importantly, have fun.

The inner child is the main force in having fun. Kids are in tune with their inner children, and have fun all the time. They are totally carefree. You could put them in a room with nothing in it, and they'd have a blast. Teens have fun here and there, though not as much fun as little kids. Many adults run around with ten thousand things to do, considering fun as something that they don't have time for, and when they do want to, they forget that how, and spend lots of money for a good time. But when they're retired and have nothing to do, they sit around wishing that they'd had more fun when they were young. Why? They find their inner child. Even though it's been neglected for years, it's still ready to run around and play the moment you suggest it.

So listen to your inner child. Get a bunch of friends together and play tunnel tag or duck duck goose, or hide and seek. Sure, your friends will laugh at you, but if you can convince them, they'll find out how much fun it is. So try it. Or your inner child will tell your conscience on you.

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