When you’re growing up, you hate being a kid. You just hate it. You can’t wait to grow up, move out and be your own person. You want to make all the rules and never have to listen to anyone ever again. Of course, when you get older, you realize that independence comes with a pretty high price and that grown-up life isn’t quite as fun as you thought it was going to be. You have to deal with mean bosses and rent increases and the ongoing question about what to make for dinner. For the most part, you’re mature now. You pay your bills on time and meet work deadlines and deal with annoying people with a smile on your face. But part of you has never really grown up completely. Here are 15 signs you’re still a kid at heart.
You may be 25 but you’re still putting ketchup on literally everything that you eat. You cover pasta, rice, broccoli, and of course French fries in the red stuff. You eat so much ketchup you think it should be considered its own food group. It’s not the healthiest practice in the world – each bottle has crazy amounts of sugar and salt – but there are worse things to be addicted to. Sometimes you even order food in restaurants so you have an excuse to use tons of ketchup, so it’s safe to say that yes, you eat a lot of burgers and hot dogs.
Remember when you were little and you thought that the best part about being an adult was being able to eat ice cream for dinner? It didn’t matter that none of the grown-ups that you knew, from your parents to family friends to other relatives, never actually enjoyed mint chocolate chip instead of meatloaf and mashed potatoes. But you know you’re still a kid if you actually do eat ice cream for your evening meal, or at least some form of junk food that your mom wouldn’t exactly approve of. Hey, it’s not your fault that popcorn or potato chips sound much more enticing than whipping up a healthy dinner.
Kids are super picky eaters. They go through weird phases where their food can’t touch on their plate or they’ll only eat white food or they love an ingredient one day and absolutely loathe it the next. If you’re the same way, then guess what? You never really grew up, even though you have a job, an apartment, a car, and all that jazz. Your cooking skills are pretty limited and so is your palate, so your meals consist of a rotation of white rice, pasta, grilled chicken, etc. You rarely eat vegetables and don’t get a ton of variety.
If summer is your favorite time of year, and the idea of being couped up inside on a hot day sounds like your personal hell, then congrats, you’re still a kid. You’ll take any excuse to spend the whole day in the hot sun. You invite your friends to the nearby beach, you join a soccer league, you love to play Frisbee in the park. You’re the same person who would spend so much time playing in the street with the other kids that your mom basically gave up on asking you to come inside for dinner.
Raise your hand if you love Christmas. You totally do, don’t you? There’s nothing like the excitement and magic of Christmas to remind you that no matter how old you think you are, you’ve never too old to love this holiday. You still want to bake sugar cookies with your mom and try to find the secret hiding place where your parents are keeping your presents. You stay up super late on Christmas Eve because your heart is beating way too fast to allow you to even think about going to bed. You feel totally giddy every single day of December leading up to the big day.
You’re super smart and are absolutely killing it at your chosen career. But still, you wake up every day and hope that you make it through and that no one thinks you’re a fraud. You don’t feel like you have it all figured out and you don’t think that you know everything (or even anything at all, if you’re honest). When you’re a kid, you’re always asking questions (“why?” is a favorite) and you always expect that other, usually older people will have all the answers. Now you’re supposed to be the one who has those answers and you don’t think that you do.
You can’t live without your mom. She’s the best, always a phone call away to solve your cooking mishaps or weird questions. You don’t even want to know what you would do without her wisdom and good advice. She never steers you down the wrong path and you basically rely on her for everything. So even though you no longer live in your childhood bedroom, you are still a kid at heart, because you need your mom every day of the week. You always need her constant reminders that you’re going to be okay and that what you’re stressing about isn’t actually worth it after all.
You find yourself laughing not only during boring meetings but totally inappropriate times, too, like when you’re sitting in your boss’s office for your annual job performance review. If you can’t stop giggling when you’re around your best friends or your silly brother or in super serious situations, then you’re still a kid. That’s totally okay because it’s better to laugh than frown, but sometimes you might need to get a hold of yourself and save it for later. You can’t help it, though, and since it’s been this way for as long as you can remember, you’re probably never going to change.
Or nephew, or cousins, or whoever the little ones in your life are. You have no problem sitting on the floor for hours at a time. Actually, you think the floor is the best place to sit. You love embracing your inner child and playing board games, tag, and hide-and-go-seek (your personal fave). When you hang out with your young relatives, you’re not even thinking about having kids – it’s more about being a kid yourself. You don’t understand why more adults don’t get down on the floor and play a game every once in a while. It sure beats worrying about bills and taxes.
If you love taking an afternoon nap on a lazy Sunday afternoon (or sneaking one at your desk when your boss is out on a lunch date), then you’re actually on the right track. It turns out that napping is pretty healthy: as long as you don’t stay in dreamland for more than half an hour, it’s a good idea. Experts say that taking a nap can not only make you feel better and more at peace, but your concentration will get much stronger, too. Turns out your mom was right when she convinced you to take regular naps when you were a child.
Whether you’re at your desk trying to work, sitting in a boring meeting, or standing in the middle of a crowded subway train, you love to draw. You haven’t stopped since you were a kid and you will take any opportunity that you can get to draw in a notebook. It’s not such a bad idea, after all, so don’t listen to anyone who tells you to pay more attention to what’s going on right in front of you (aka your boss). According to experts, if you draw (or “doodle” as it’s often called), you will not only be better at concentrating, but your learning and thinking skills will improve, too.
Remember when you were a kid and you had absolutely zero control over your emotions? You could be sitting in Math class and a classmate said something mean about your hair and, boom, there you were, crying hysterically. You were humiliated, but you could never stop crying at the worst, most random moments. If this still describes you today, then congrats, you’re still a kid at heart. It’s definitely not super convenient to have no control over when you cry, but if you look on the bright side, at least you have feelings and aren’t afraid to express them.
It doesn’t matter if it’s Frozen or a Disney movie from long ago, if it’s animated, you’re totally there. You even shell out money to see animated movies in the theatre and you’re not ashamed of it one bit. It helps when the movie is super popular among not only children but adults, too, so you don’t have to be quite so embarrassed. But you’ll never give up the thrill of seeing a beautiful, fun cartoon on the big screen (while munching on a large popcorn with a side of sour candy, too, of course). Sometimes you bring the kid in your life so you seem like you have an excuse to be there, but you would go anyway.
As a kid, did you love thunderstorms or did you absolutely fear them? It was probably the latter, right? It’s pretty rare for little kids to be fearless when it comes to thunder and lightning. If you still jump when it rains at night, you’re basically still a kid. You probably want to hide under the covers and find it hard to sleep, but the only difference is, now, if you stay up all night, you won’t have your mom lecturing you the next morning. You might fall asleep in your morning meeting, though, so that’s probably not the best idea.
Remember being a child and picking red peppers off delivery pizza or making sure there were absolutely no traces of carrots in your spaghetti sauce? You were always rearranging the meals that your mom put in front of you, trying to make sure you didn’t accidentally consume something that you considered inedible. You’re still doing the same thing today, only it’s slightly less annoying and rude since you’re the one doing the cooking. Anytime you head to your parents’ for a nostalgic home-cooked meal or meet a friend for dinner, you’re always staring at your meals, looking for intruders. Old habits die hard, right?