Awkward phase shapes future character

Embrace not-so-fabulous years as part of growing up

Michaela Regier

More stories from Michaela Regier



“I thought I was a big tomboy when I was younger so I played with the guys at recess, tried my hand at video games and got offended when my mom forced me into dresses.” – sports editor Michaela Regier

In 2013, the film “We’re the Millers” came out, and the phrase, hashtag, and life motto, “NO RAGRETS” exploded. Though the scene of the misspelled tattoo is comical, it brings up a great point that is ignored by most. The young “thug” embraces his tattoo, even if he looks idiotic. This being said, please do not run out and get a gaudy, grammatically incorrect tattoo. Many have times in life that they wish to not think about. When mom brings out the scrapbook to show significant others, it is sure that quick feet will lead to a hiding space.

Cliches about “running from the past” show up in all sorts of movies and literature. People run from different sorts of things. Jenny ran from Forrest (even though Forrest ran a lot too). Hamlet ran from death. So what is everyone running from? Love? Memories? Death? No, probably not death. However, did preteens not love their sideways ponytails at some point? Was the personalized, two-inches-too short, Chiefs jersey not full of memories?

Why is everyone so afraid of their awkward years? Homework was low, if existent at all. Field trips occurred. Trends were formed. Life changing friendships were made. That’s right kids! People were friends even when colorful socks were worn to the knees.

Maybe the awkward years occurred later. Maybe they never stopped. Everyone has them. Even celebrities had school pictures with braces and chubby cheeks. Katy Perry could probably pay for all of her high school pictures to be wiped from the world, yet she does not. Why? She is a proud person. She became who she is because of those years, just like all the normal people. If it were not for the stages of bright orange and blue eyeshadow, how would girls know how to do makeup? Without the age of polos with sport shorts, how would boys learn that is not the definition of ‘dressy casual’?

Humans are not very instinctive mammals. They do not just wake up one morning and know how the world works. Flaws are inevitable. Flaws that they do not recognize for years are common. However, humans learn from their past, their mistakes and successes. They learn from their entitled sense of bullying. They learn from the years they spent doing anything to be popular, to fit in. Everyone has an awkward stage whether it be at the age of five, 15, or 52. Stop running from it. Embrace the awkward years because they make up the present and future.