I wish I had the uncluttered mind and unwavering innocence of my childhood. I want to take it like a quilt and wrap this adult mind in it, keeping out the chill of reality and age.
Somewhere along the line I have become a cynic and desensitized to so many things.
I wish I still left room for true compassion. I remember the first time I became aware of a homeless person. I was a child, still living in Trinidad, and the man lying on the sidewalk in dirty tattered clothes made me feel sad and a little bit afraid. I wondered if he had a family and why he lived on the street. None of those questions cross my mind anymore.
I wish more children were in love with reading as I was at their age. I have no patience for the distractions of the Wii and the internet and their packed daily schedules. I want to see them enthralled by Oliver Twist and Black Beauty and excited by encyclopaedias and afternoons spent in libraries. This adult me, wants the children of 2010 to be like those in the 1980s. Where life was slower and my imagination had enough places to bounce around in and the technologies of today just did not exist.
I wish that being ‘ghetto’ was not marketed as a fashionable lifestyle. To me it is poverty and a state of being you aspire to come out of. But I rarely try to consider what it is like for those who have lived ‘it’ for so long that it is now a part of their psyche and heritage. It is easy to abhor because I do not understand it. It usually is when you are looking down from what you think is a great height.
But recently there has been a slow thawing of my adult heart. As I watched those bodies tumble into the mass graves after the earthquake in Haiti and read the stories of young soldiers who have died in Afghanistan, I felt something akin to deep sadness. I realised then that child in me is not completely lost. Why these things made her appear I may never know. But it made me yearn to hold on to her and start to look at the world with different eyes.
Maybe I am wishing for too much.