Innocence vs. Experience

Innocence vs. Experience

Jackie Steele, Staff Writer

Perception is an incredible thing. Every experience gives us something new, no matter how big or small, and the ability to see things in a new light can really change you for the better.

Think back on when you were young, and the brilliant innocence you possessed. How you thought, how certain things made you feel. Santa Claus, the tooth fairy, the Easter bunny. The world was magical, simplicity brought the most wonderful kind of satisfaction. There are both good and bad things about the naivete of youth and innocence.

It’s fun to be a kid, few responsibilities, being friends with everyone (there are always exceptions), and seemingly unlimited second chances. The world is your indestructible playground.

Childhood is a time of conformity for the most part, which despite the usually negative connotation, can be fun. We didn’t question what we were doing or why we were doing it, and we didn’t have the insight to wonder what the purpose was or think of the consequences of our actions, we only did. Although limited, our perspective did give us a more genuine and harmless approach to things and allowed us to be carefree and not worry about the problems of tomorrow.

In contrast to innocence, experience is much bolder, serious and dangerous, and as we all know, independent. We set out to face the real world, and it seems as though there is no going back. Everything becomes reality, we are faced with important life choices, and the problems we were blind to during childhood are now blindingly clear.

Although at times we yearn to return to innocence, experience gives us the advantage of being able to question, wonder, and form our own opinions based on our experience, not just follow what we are told.

Everything we are exposed to forms and shapes us into who we are. Our experiences during innocence may be over, but they are still preserved as they are, and we can certainly learn from them. Although we are now faced with significant choices all the time, we also have perspective on our side, and are able to choose wisely based on what we know.