Reminiscing the past is still vivid in my mind as I recall the psychosocial developmental characteristics that I’ve encountered in my existence and made me who I am today. My parents are authoritative and raised me as an individual who values principles and ethics. Every stage that I’ve come across allows me to be familiar with each phase and the virtues and conflicts that comes with it. Transitioning from one period to another doesn’t necessarily mean losing the experience built in the former, rather it become a fundamental stepping stone to construct more experiences and learning from it.
During my infancy, I’ve developed a strong relationship with my mother. It may be because I was in her tummy for the past 9 months and I’ve grown deeply attached to her after conception. I was still not aware of my surroundings at that time, but I was certain that I am in good hands because of my parents and always look for them for consistency and stability of care. I also developed sense of trust that allows me to open up to new relationships with the other members of the family. Thus, there were still times that I am not comfortable and feel threatened when other people tries to carry me away from my mother because of the instinct that they are strangers who I am not familiar with. In addition regarding sense of trust, I established hope that even as new events arise, there are still people who will support me.
At the age of 2-3 years old, I’ve become more mobile and starts to discover my skills and abilities. This taught me to become independent in my own little way like standing on my own playing with my toys, putting my clothes, trying to eat by myself. In line with this, I’ve also become accustomed of what I should and should not do as a child. I’m the first child of my parents and they are still new to child rearing that’s why they are lenient at times and strict at other stuff. There are instances when my parents let me walk by myself and when I fall down, they would not help me stand up. They explained later on that they encouraged me to stand on my own until I succeed on standing up or seek for their help because they don’t want me to be spoiled or be someone who gets what they want. They raised me to be independent and at the same time protecting me so I will not have the mindset that there are people who will fix things for me in times of trouble. In line with this, my parents are supportive and concerned of my being that resulted to me having the sense of responsibility and achieving specific goals but concurrently, first timers and overprotective that caused me to have lack of self-esteem at times.
This age lets me encounter and meet different people at my school and constructed in me my interpersonal skills through initiatives with children my age. This was also the time that my younger siblings are born and I think highly of myself because I have siblings who will look up to me now. I am a goal-seeker and my achievements are positive credentials for others to recognize my worth and follow me because of what I have attained. I am not the type of child that asks many questions because I don’t want to bother other people with what they were doing or become a “nuisance”. Thus, I let myself discover on my own through books and other learning materials. This gives me the purpose and intention to be responsible at all times, asserting myself frequently.
I am learning the fundamentals and basic matters of learning in this phase. I’ve changed school from my previous school to my mother’s alma mater. There are some vast adjustments that I have to do in order to adapt again in the new environment. I am still an achiever but not the same as before because I’m still familiarizing myself with the people around me. The teachers played a significant role in my life. There are some who will believe in you and some will make you think of your purpose twice. There is this one teacher who really disheartened my young self’s fragile feelings and stick to favoritism than students who are willing to learn. This is where I begin to doubt myself, my abilities and potentials, and feel inferior because of the changes that is happening around me. Adding to the inferiority complex that I have attained, the sudden revelation that I have a heart disease called rheumatic fever added salt to the wounds. The competence in me that time was shattered because of these uncalled past experiences but I was able to grow modestly amidst all these trials.
The transition from adolescence to early adulthood was harder than it looks because it now demands you to look at the bigger picture in the future – career, relationships, families, achievements, etc. This is now the time to belong in the society where you can fit in and find the “real” you. Same as before, I changed school again. But this time, I will not make the same mistake from the past. This is the time that I redeemed myself from inferiority and start anew. This major stage is very important to an individual because this will shape him or her in what he or she will become in the future. This is the chance where I grab the opportunity and search for my deeper self, my personal identity through my personal values and goals. I am responsible of making my role in the society as a commitment and not a duty. I am firm on my stand and I will not be shaken to comply to the “acceptable” standards given to me by the society. I am contented and happy with the decisions I made. It also boosts my morale because after a decade of having rheumatic fever, I was cleared and assured that I am now fully recovered. It added to the fact that I am completely whole again as a human being, physically and mentally.
I am now currently in the stage of intimacy and isolation. I would honestly consider myself between the two. I am diagnosed personally by my previous school’s guidance counselor as an ambivert. Sometimes, I enjoy myself being surrounded by other people and there were times that I would love to have my alone time. I don’t have a hard time meeting individuals but I have a hard time letting go of the toxic ones because I feel attached to them. I have a fear of commitments because the moment you let more people walk in your life, there are more possibilities that they can just walk right out of your life. I am open to gaining long-term relationship with the other sex but it’s not my top priority for now. I feel the love coming from the people around me and that’s an assurance that I will always be loved. I also practiced having self-love or prioritizing myself before others because I may be always there for them but how about myself? Who will be there for me when I need someone to listen to my successes and failures in life.
Meanwhile, my observation for the 7th and 8th stages, the adults around me tend to have a stable mindset and care about their next generation. The adults in my family are now contented of what they succeeded with their existence and don’t have any regrets made in the past because they don’t call it regrets, they call it learning because it made them who they are today. They share their wisdoms and experiences that may be a great help for the next generation. The wisdom that they’ve accumulated enables them or look back in their life with a sense of completeness-accepting death without any regrets or fears. I want to be like them in the future. Having that sense of accomplishment and knowing the abundance of God’s blessings in their life as the real source of happiness in life and not all about humane and worldly material things.