Never Grow Up

Growing up. 

It's a scary thing, unknown and sometimes unwanted. I remember saying to myself as an eight year-old, "I will never grow too old to play Barbies." But, against my will, I played Barbies less and less. Somehow they didn't hold the magic anymore; I couldn't immerse myself in playworld like I once could. I stopped spending all day playing House outside and started to do productive things, like clean my room. I stopped eating frozen pizzas every day and started eating whole wheat bread sandwiches and guacamole. 

In lots of little ways, I grew up, but I cherish the ways that I didn't grow up, nor will I ever grow up in. 

For I still take joy in coloring in my Tangled coloring book. 

I can't help but thumb through the American Girl catalogs that my sisters get. 

Potty humor still makes me laugh. 

Disney movies steal my heart. 

I still don't regularly make my bed. 

But the culture that we live in doesn't value these things. The world today emphasises growing up, not cherishing childhood. Too often, we just look forward to the next stage of life instead of savoring the one we live in today. Toddlers own phones. Middle schoolers dress like adults. High schoolers value "mature" experiences. The world urges us to grow up and leave childish things behind, but I refuse to completely "grow up." 

Of course I will mature, and in fact, I love growing in character and maturity, especially in Christ. This isn't what I refer to when I say that I don't want to grow up. When I say that I want to value childhood, I mean that I never want to get to a place where I stop looking at the world in wonder. I never want to forget the joy of the little things. I never want to focus so much on the path ahead of me that I forget to admire the scenery. 

Yes, I'm growing up in numerous ways, but in so many other ways, I will never grow up.

Time will never take away my joy for Christmas.

I will never be too old for Princesses stories.

Often I will take detours to the toy section to glance at the new Barbies.

I will never look at the weeds in our yard as weeds but as strawberries, grapes, lettuce, bananas, salt, and more.

No one understood growing up as well as Walt Disney, who saw the value of hard work and good character, but who also knew that the magic of childhood should never quite leave us. Here are a few quotes from him:

"Why do we have to grow up? I know more adults who have the children's approach to life. They're people who don't give a hang what the Joneses do. You see them at Disneyland every time you go there. They are not afraid to be delighted with simple pleasures, and they have a degree of contentment with what life has brought - sometimes it isn't much, either."

"Adults are only kids grown up, anyway."

"That's the real trouble with the world, too many people grow up."

"I do not make films primarily for children. I make them for the child in all of us, whether we be six or sixty."

But we cannot forget that being an adult does provide exciting and productive opportunities. The following Walt Disney quotes emphasise the perseverance necessary to make your vision become reality. It's like playing House but in real life! 

"The difference in winning and losing is most often ... not quitting."

"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them."

"The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing." 

“First, think. Second, believe. Third, dream. And finally, dare.”

So I challenge you to live when and where you are, to wonder at the small things and work towards the bigger things. I dare you to never quite grow up but to still reach a little further in this adventure of life. Life takes works, yes, and inevitably we will grow up, but we never have to grow up all of the way. We never have to forget what it was like to hug Daddy when he came home. We can still make sandcastles. We can still re-watch those favorite childhood memories. 

Grow older, more mature, and stronger in character. But please, never grow up. 

Princess Hannah

(p.s. Now I'm in NYC with my Mother! I'll be home soon, though!) 
Hannah P


  1. I LOVE THIS SO MUCH!!!!! I'm just like you- I don't want to grow up, not in the little ways, anyways. I love Disney. I'm still totally willing to play dolls with my little sisters. I own an insane amount of stuffed animals that I will never part with. The list goes on. XD
    (And I may or may not have Never Grow Up currently written on my chalkboard, accompanied by the second star to the right ;) )
    Grace Anne // http://totallygraced.blogspot.com/

    1. That chalkboard sounds super cute! And I'm so glad that you relate! (I too find it hard to part with my toys...)

  2. Can I just say "YES!" a thousand times? This is beautiful and so true and you've worded what I've only been able to feel all along. So thank you. :)

    1. Thank you so much for this very encouraging comment! It really makes me smile!

  3. I love this so much! Thank you. I'm very frightened since I will be graduating in two years, at the age of just turned 17, and feel frightened because I'm supposed to do something with my life right away. This reminds me that it's ok to take it slow. Thank you!
    Oh, and I'm listening to Disney music right now while writing this comment. :)

    1. I am thrilled that this post encouraged you! And don't worry, I thought that I would never feel ready for graduation, but it is amazing how God prepares you for His plan!

      And Disney music rocks!

  4. Growing up has me feeling extremely frightened, because with each passing day is a bit more distance of the bridge between my younger self and my present self; I even miss the version of myself early in 2014, who didn't care if she sang Frozen at the top of her lungs or the fact that though she got lost in one of the riskest parts of town, she held her hand up high. I'm childish, but that doesn't mean I have to surrender my childhood completely to become an adult. Thank you for this.

    xoxo Morning

    1. Cherish the ways that you connect with your inner child, but also look forward to the ways that you took that child and let her grow up into something even more beautiful!

      Thank you for the thoughtful comment!

  5. Omg! The other day, I was at Toys R Us for my little brother's birthday, and I peeked at the Barbies too! (specifically the dollhouses; I always wanted one of those when I was little, but never got one) But what you said is so true; I see so many girls around me fighting to be the first one to grow up: racing to their driver's license, bragging about part-time jobs and raises, getting boyfriend after boyfriend. And there's nothing particularly wrong with those things, it's just, when you do them for the wrong reasons--like, to grow up faster--then they become empty and useless.

    I like being young at heart; in fact, I look very young for my age. and I really am very young; 15 isn't so old, although sometimes with all of my responsibilities it feels like it is. But I'm in no hurry to grow up; I like being young, and I never ever want to lose my childhood innocence, no matter how much the world fights to take it from me.

    (P.S. everyone knows coloring books are more enjoyable when you're old enough to create color patterns)

    O | Life as a Young Lady

    1. First of all, hello! I was away when you found my blog so I never got to welcome you!

      And second, thank you so much for this thought-out comment! I always get excited when I see a long comment to read and respond to. What you said about the motivation behind growing up really made me think and I agree completely! You are a very observant person that I can't wait to get to know more!

  6. What an Awesome Princess You are!!!!

    Love, daddy

    1. Thank you very much Daddy! You show me a great example!

  7. I just absolutely love how much truth there is in this post.
    Culture just wants us to act older, look older, be older than we really are. We need to embrace the age we are, and treasure the things from childhood and go back to them occasionally :)

    1. Perfectly worded! I'm thankful that so many people also support cherishing childhood while embracing living in the present!