Heartaches & Heartbreaks #5 : Growing Pains

I apologize for the lateness of this post, but I think that everything that has happened in the past two weeks allowed me to make this more honest and truthful and transparent than I thought I was being in my initial draft of this post. So, let’s get started shall we?

Growing Pains!! Not the kind where you grow tall people, I have no idea what that is like.

When we’re young, we can’t wait to be old. We see our parents, our teachers, our role models, our idols, etc… with this air about them that seems so cool. At least I did. I though that my teachers were some of the coolest people in the world, and I couldn’t really figure out why , but what I did know is that they were grown.

Grown. To be grown. Why in the world do we aspire to get here so much when we’re little? And then once we’re here, wish we were little again? The irony kills me time and time again.

Now for a slightly sobering reason as to why I personally wanted to be grown up.

I wanted to help.

I was uncomfortable as a child…awkward too, but uncomfortable because I felt useless being young and in school…I loved school but whenever things were tight or a little rough financially. I was beyond frustrated when certain things happened and yet again there I was a student, no money to my name to help my family out to make sure my mom wouldn’t stress anymore to help out my dad once in a while…I wanted to be a grown up so bad… ever since I was 10.

When I turned 10, I learned to fear and dislike money.

Now I don’t fear it. I just still don’t like it very much, probably because I still don’t have much.. but hey, I digress.

I remember being 10 years old and feeling like the weight of the entire Watkins-Cruz clan was on my shoulders. I was going into middle school, and the frequency of my father’s “focus pumpkin you have to go to college” talks were really getting ridiculous.

SO that’s when it started really I wanted to come to college to be grown and one day help my parents out. I wanted to work hard in school the only place my parents would let me work (thank you by the way) so that I could get to a point where I could help them out, take care of them, lift stress off of them.

And let me tell you…. being a 20 something is great, but sheesh it’s not all it’s cracked up to be.

I can picture the adults reading this and chuckling to themselves, but come on, think about how you felt at this point…there was no story book telling you what it would feel like…nor what it would be like. Even if you had parents that “kept it real” with you, you still had to go through a moment of ….oh….OH…. okay… this is grown.

Growing pains I believe come in a variety of ways. As someone who hasn’t grown since the 8th grade I’m not really talking about height here, I’m talking about emotional, mental, and physical growing pains (aside from bones).

Let’s look at what is added on when you begin to grow older:

  • Bills : There’s money again. Say hello world, and goodbye the awesome checking/savings you thought you’d have because bills exist, and self-control is needed constantly in this area.
    • Credit Cards are apparently the devil. Didn’t know that. Still not entirely convinced by I see the argument’s point.
    • Taxes. What?
    • Rent. Lawd, rent.
    • Car payments. That vehicle of freedom can be a burden now.
    • Fun money. I have $15 and that needs to last me for 1.5 weeks of fun at least.
  • Health: We cannot do what we want to do or have to do or need to do if we’re unhealthy. Simple as that. But when you’re 2.5 hours away from home, surrounded by people who all ceremoniously get sick or start coughing on the same day…what’s your move? You can’t just run home. Or when you see that all the beautiful junk food is starting to make those steps you have to climb everyday real difficult, it’s on YOU to change that. You need to find the balance in healthy food and exercise, and pinterest sadly does not count.
  • Work: Jobs are great. I’ve been blessed to have great jobs these past few years, but the greatness of them doesn’t discount the fact that they’re a huge responsibility. Those mornings you could sleep in? BYE. Those times you could sit around and procrastinate and do homework, hello office hours, BYE free time. I’m being dramatic, but you see the point.
  • Love Life & Relationships: I’m not going to go into detail here, for my last entry in this series is dedicated to this… but geez….another challenging one that changes again and again as you get older.

Ultimately I think growing pains shouldn’t be limited to describe when people grow taller. One, that would make no sense for me to talk about, and two, I think the phrase really fits perfectly in describing what a lot of growing up feels like. It’s sort of painful. I mean obviously not at once, but the constant yet erroneous changes that pop up? Painful. The transitions you go through? Painful.

And it’s not a matter of an “OW” painful. It’s the kind of pain that is what makes you dead tired when you go to bed at night.

It’s the kind of pain that makes your heart almost unbearably heavy but you know you keep going anyways.

It’s the kind of pain that is expressed as stress.


It’s the kind of pain that can often remind you of how far you’ve come, and how far you have yet to go.

Much love,



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