For anyone who understands me, the title I choose to use here is a cricket joke (for which I apologise slightly). I have been mulling over a blog topic in my head for the past few days and I have decided on the method to approach this post with at last. This shall be something of a self-reflective post, the type of post I always find fascinating to read and one which I find a unique challenge to attempt to write. The main reason providing the impetus for my desire to create such a post is that tomorrow I will reach the age of twenty (which is still rather young, all things considered) and as such properly leave the 'teenage years' behind me. Which leaves me wanting to create a post here about all that I have achieved in the past twenty years - roughly.
I suppose I wish to provide a note here on my writing technique firstly. It is a technique which has developed over the past ten years and I wish to continue to develop as I grow my vocabulary further and further. I believe that writing stems primarily from thinking and so, before I write anything I like to think and ponder the ideas of which I am to write about. While others may write down many notes or research, I firstly think about my structure (and perhaps research a touch too) and my ideas. I then can, once I have finished mentally breaking down the ideas, have a burst of speed-writing in which I spill everything onto a page and later edit it into the form I wish to have.
Anyway, the above paragraph merely serves to point out that this topic is one I have been mentally digesting for the past few days, working out what I wish to properly write about. I feel like a brief mention of my childhood is necessary therefore, in order to continue.
I was about five when my mother first read a novel to me. I remember it being a cold day, so we gathered in the back room of the house, round an old fashioned electric heater while she read The Lion The Witch And The Wardrobe to my brother and I. We then drew pictures of what had appealed to us most about the book (I drew Mr Tumnus - as you do - standing by the lamppost). Ever since then it has always been specific mental images associated with novels which have stayed with me the most when it comes to books.
Two years later I was able to read on my own. Which is a big deal now when you think about it, but back then it was just another exciting step in life. I finished off The Chronicles of Narnia, got my hands on almost all Enid Blyton novels and devoured several obscure novels that I have almost forgotten the titles of. Then at around the age of eight or nine I discovered The Hobbit, asking my parents to read it to me - because it had a red dragon on the cover. I fell in love with that novel and came to want to read the sequels, something I achieved two years later once my mother had also read Lord of the Rings with us.
Of course, around this same time I started realising that I had many other interests aside from reading. Ranging from socialising, to watching films (I discovered Star Wars at a similarly young age to reading), to playing video games and listening to a range of music, my interests became established as part of the rounded person I consider myself to be. I must add to that that I developed a love (as is the Melbournian way) of our two major sports - Cricket and Australian Football - which has lead to me playing cricket in the past few years and performing well.
Of course then you have the obligatory twelve years of schooling. Six of which were homeschooling years for me and six of which were private schooling. What else can I say aside from that I graduated with an excellent score to reach university and am now halfway through my teaching degree (I had the excellent news that a friend of mine wishes to be in the same course for next year!).
Now that I have been through the university years I can look back at the past few years and state with some clarity that these years have been somewhat formative. I've learnt plenty from being out in the workforce (doing graveyard shifts is character building I will admit) and being given the freedom and responsibility of an adult has enabled me to work out my own path in life. Driving around means I can visit friends and family without needing to be driven and enables me to have plenty of freedom of choice. And even despite the changes to my lifestyle I have still stuck close to my family, first and foremost, because in the end they are the people who are most important to me.
I suppose that what I can say in the end from all of this is that twenty years in hindsight seems small, but it has been packed with so many moments. I hope to see many more (and better) moments in the years ahead!