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Millennial parents, there’s so many options for child care today. Especially if you’re a working parent, you’ll likely need to utilize at least one, maybe more, of those options.
But when there are so many options in front of you, what’s the best one for your family? We chatted with Regina Barone, owner of Tiny Toes Daycare of Rockland, New York, about some of the best child care options for millennial parents.
Why should you enroll your children in a child care program?
Many parents enroll their children in programs similar to mine because they want their children to be in a nurturing and learning environment while they’re at work, and need someone to care for their children.
What makes a day care center different than having a family member watch your child? In my opinion, child care centers give children the opportunity of socialization with other children their age, and allows them to get used to being with others besides family members (which is helpful for kindergarten transition). Additionally, many daycares have programs that get children used to a school routine, which of course can be very beneficial.
What should you look for in a day care center?
Check to see if the center is state licensed. Find out their teacher qualifications and trainings. Ask questions, such as: do they offer a program? If yes, what is their philosophy, and does it match with what you are looking for?
Millennials are known for looking for discounts. How can you get the most bang for your buck in a child care center? Looking for discounts, in any industry — including child care, is important. If you have someone who wants to watch your child (for free — for example, a grandmother) you can enroll your child part-time: either half days, or a few days a week. This way, it’s not the same cost of a full-time child. If you have more than one child, a sibling discount may be available.
What makes one day care center different from another?
The differences are all about the programs each day care center may offer. Some have more space (in terms of both outdoor or indoor) than others. But it’s important to look at what each individual teacher brings, if centers have special events, and how much family involvement comes into play.
What are the benefits of socializing a child from a young age?
I have seen that children who have been exposed at an earlier age definitely adapt more easily to both peers and adults, as opposed to children who start at a later age. This can affect their future academic careers. If children adapt well socially, the fact that they aren’t adapting socially isn’t distracting them in other areas.
How many hours per day should a child spend at day care?
It all depends on the parent’s work schedule. Most child care centers are open 11-12 hours every day. My suggestion is to drop-off and pick-up according to that time frame, giving yourself time to do home routines. For parents not working, but still wanting your child to have the experience of being around other children, the recommended time frame is seven hours (about the length of a school day).
What do millennial parents typically look for in a child care facility and in teachers?
As both a millennial parent and a day care provider, what seems to be consistent with what parents look for is caring and nurturing teachers who are stern when needed. They also value a clean and safe facility with a great program that not only offers academics, but play as well.
Regina Barone holds an undergraduate degree in Elementary and Special Education from St. Thomas Aquinas College, and holds a Master’s degree in Literacy from The College of New Rochelle. She has worked in daycares for 15 years, and served as the Director of Tiny Toes Daycare of Rockland for seven years, before stepping into the role of owner for the past three years.
Then, on August 18, now former Chief Strategist Steve Bannon became the latest member of the Trump team to be out of a job.
Why is yet another appointee leaving the White House? Depending on who is asked, Bannon’s departure from the White House was “long-rumored,” according to the New York Times. Between his long-reported disputes with Trump’s National Security Adviser Lt. General H.R. McMaster, his general lack of approval from Trump’s new Chief of Staff John Kelly, bad-mouthing fellow Trump staff members, and downplaying the threat of North Korea in an interview, critics (including Chief of Staff Kelly) have been calling for Bannon’s removal.
Who made the decision? CNN is reporting that Bannon was fired following his failure to resign — and was, in turn, “forced out.” White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders did not confirm or deny that Bannon was fired, or left of his own accord. But, Bannon and Kelly “mutually decided” that August 18 would be Bannon’s last day. So, the stories are shaky all the way around, to put it nicely.
What’s next for Bannon? Bannon’s previous employer, white nationalist news outlet Breitbart, is likely to welcome him back with open arms, the CNN report also states. Which reminds us to raise the question of why a known white nationalist like Bannon was even appointed in the first place — especially in the wake of the events in Charlottesville.
So, is this a good move or a bad move? It’s a considerably good move considering Bannon’s white nationalist history. Following Trump’s initial reaction to Charlottesville and subsequent “many sides” statement, it looks good from a public relations perspective to remove those with ties to a white nationalist news outlet from the administration. It can give the appearance that Trump won’t tolerate that sort of rhetoric from his staff. And, of course, the whole making light of the North Korea situation couldn’t possibly look good for anyone involved.
But, what does it say about this administration, now that another appointee is out the door? No matter the reasoning behind the move, or who orchestrated it, another appointee leaving on the heels of Scaramucci, Spicer, and Flynn… and Sessions (oh no, wait, he’s still in) could, and will, make the American people scratch their collective heads. We’re wondering what’s “really going on” in there. We’re watching Trump’s public persona and wondering how anyone could work for him. And our eyes are on the White House as though watching a reality television show (like, say, The Apprentice…). Our political system shouldn’t be viewed that way. We shouldn’t be wondering who gets “voted off” next week. And that’s exactly what’s happening.
Disclaimer: The political views presented in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of Not Another Millennial Blog.
While Audrey Hepburn has many iconic roles to her credit, her turn as Sabrina Fairchild is largely overshadowed by the likes of Holly Golightly (Breakfast at Tiffany’s), Princess Ann (Roman Holiday), and Eliza Doolittle (My Fair Lady). Released in 1954, Sabrina is a story of transformation and love wrapped up in a palatable romantic comedy package. The film may be over 60 years old, but has many relatable lessons for millennials trying to navigate the world of careers and relationships. For our generation, this is a classic not to be missed.
We see that love knows no hierarchy Sabrina’s father has worked as the Larrabees’ — a wealthy family with a powerful company, and large estate — chauffeur for many years. For almost as many years, Sabrina has been in love with the Larrabees’ youngest son — the lazy, lustful David. David’s frequent ignorance toward Sabrina’s feelings for him finally becomes unbearable, and Sabrina attempts suicide by carbon monoxide poisoning — only to be saved by David’s older brother, Linus.
We learn that true love does wait
After her brush with death, Sabrina leaves for culinary school in Paris for two years, and comes back a different woman. Gone is the uncertain, lovesick young lady, who is replaced with a refined and confident woman. And, the now-engaged David notices. Panicked that the dissolution of the engagement could ruin a profitable business deal, Linus attempts to distract Sabrina, and keep David’s advances on her at bay by perusing Sabrina himself.
We understand that people change, and it can be for the good
Upon her return home, Sabrina’s change in appearance and attitude are immediately apparent. But, throughout the film, the men interested in the new and improved Sabrina also transition into better versions of themselves. Initially, Linus only claims to be infatuated with Sabrina. Over time, he not only genuinely comes to love her, but also becomes more relaxed, and less focused on the company as his only source of pleasure and happiness. It is David who is forced to be more responsible, and think not only of his own promises to his soon-to-be wife, but also the welfare of a company he may one day control. Isn’t that what love — both love for ourselves and others — is supposed to do… help bring out the best in each person?
We learn that we’re not the only ones with doubts in relationships Sometimes, it is difficult to know whether or not the person we are dating is a person who is good for us. Sabrina has always been attracted to David, but before acquiring her worldly culinary education, he paid her little mind. Shouldn’t the person we are meant to be with stand by us, even when we are not at our most beautiful, put-together versions of ourselves? Relationships should be more than just beautiful backdrops for our selfies, and shout outs when bae cooks you dinner.
We’re reassured that it’s not just us that hate talking about our feelings Unfortunately, when Linus feels the stirrings of love for Sabrina, he cannot even admit to them himself. Whether it is because he is much older than Sabrina, or because of the guilt he feels for not coming clean about his intentions, Linus cannot see himself as being right for Sabrina. Perhaps an audience might feel similarly when one considers the pain it would cause both parties in real life. For millennials, internet dating has caused its own set of problems — many of which are based on a lack of honesty, and an uncertainty about what each person wants (Are we officially dating? Are we exclusive? Are we merely a hookup? Are we just “hanging out?”).
Suicide awareness is prevalent, and that’s a huge step for this time period
Sabrina brings up suicide, in a time where the subject was very much taboo. In our modern world, where suicide games are a horrifying trend, and a young woman has gone to jail for encouraging the completion of such an act, the very mention of suicide should strike a very real chord in millennial hearts. Thankfully, Linus is there to stop Sabrina from making an irreversible mistake, and she takes her second chance at life as an opportunity to go on an adventure — and become the person she has always wanted to be. Think of all the love and heartache, support and disappointment Sabrina would have missed out on. No one will ever know what changes could make all the difference. We should so that our generation can continue to pursue our passions, fall in love, and live the lives we’ve all always wanted.
My summer was, in a word, hectic. I moved, traveled to five states, and worked at three different summer camps, all while I maintained my full-time job. Naturally, when I started becoming really tired, I wasn’t too surprised or concerned. I thought that it was normal to be tired from doing all of these things. And, usually, it is. I was run down, and it just made sense.
Fatigue, however, is not normal. And unfortunately, I learned that the hard way, by letting it get really bad before I did anything about it.
I first noticed that something was weird when I was not able to sleep through the night for a few weeks straight. Usually, I’m a pretty heavy sleeper. But even though I was so tired, my body would not shut off. It took a toll on me in every imaginable way.
Physically In the past, I could run five miles a couple times a week. However, this past summer, I could barely walk half a mile to the train without my legs feeling sore for hours. My muscles always ached like I had just lifted 100-pound weights. I rarely felt “good” for more than a few hours at a time.
Socially I’m usually a very empathetic person, and all of a sudden I felt nothing, even after hearing startling or upsetting news. I found it difficult to focus on anyone or anything except how tired I was. I didn’t remember the things that people told me, which was frustrating to both me and them when we tried to have conversations. I was often frustrated and impatient with myself and with others, and it made me think that no one wanted to hang out with me (even though I was never told or shown that outright, thankfully).
Mentally Work was extremely difficult. Simple tasks that I would easily do daily became difficult. I craved mundane and repetitive work, when usually I do a million things at the same time. Why? Because I felt like that was all I could do.
My memory took a toll At summer camps, I couldn’t remember my campers’ names after having spent days with them. Yes, there are lots of kids at camp, but I’ve worked at camp for years, and this was never a problem before. Even more concerning? When I looked back at the end of most days, I couldn’t remember anything that I had done that day.
Anxiety, and depressive symptoms These were also at an all time high, and besides minor anxiety here and there, I had never felt these types of symptoms before in my life. I never wanted to get out of bed, and I constantly had anxiety about whether this would go away, or if I would ever feel okay again.
As you can imagine, I tried everything I could think of to fix it. I drank endless cups of coffee to make me feel less foggy, I took naps whenever I could with the vain hope of revitalization, and I spent my weekends, days off, and nights doing as little as possible.
When I’d tried everything I could think of to no avail, I became very concerned. This wasn’t a normal tired, I eventually admitted to myself. I was sure that something was wrong. I started calling it “fatigue” instead of just “tired,” hoping that someone could give me an answer.
Well, people gave me answers all right.
“You’re not eating well. “You’re not exercising enough.” “You need to sleep more.” “Well, you’ve been doing a lot. This is totally normal.” All of these were things I heard way too often. Or, more annoyed answers: “I’m tired too, you’re not the only one working hard,” and “you’re overreacting, it’s all in your head.” I found myself Googling “symptoms of [insert malady here]” way too often. So I stopped telling people, for fear of sounding crazy or dramatic.
And I decided to do something about it: I had blood work done, and it came back positive for Lyme disease. How I felt when I got the results back was the most scared and relieved I’ve probably ever felt in my life. The diagnosis explained all of the things that I was feeling, and I’ve since started antibiotics and feel a thousand times better.
I didn’t have the tell-tale signs of Lyme disease: the bulls-eye rash or the fever. If I did have a fever, it was low-grade enough for me to work through. So really, the fatigue was the only sign that I could go on. I wish that I hadn’t ignored that sign for so long, because this problem could have been resolved much sooner.
The thing about fatigue is that it looks normal to an outsider. You walk and talk like you always have. No one really notices anything except that you’re tired, and maybe moodier than usual. But in your head, you know that something is different. It’s not dramatic. It’s necessary for your health to address fatigue.
I worked in my alma mater’s study abroad office for four years during my undergraduate career, and was so excited that work-study experience landed me my first “big girl job” at an international non-profit organization in Washington, D.C., working as a Program Assistant. The following summer felt like eternity. Waiting, waiting, waiting to get a call back for a job opportunity. It didn’t help that I was determined to work in international education.
Finally, after three months of postgrad anxiety, I finally had what many millennials want: a salary job working 9-5, moving to a new city, and my very own apartment (with a roommate of course). But most importantly, finally a step into my chosen field.
Eight months in, I was literally referred to as a paper pusher. I looked to my two co-workers in the cubicles next to me, also millennials, to see their reactions — and their faces resembled mine in all ways. Appalled. Discouraged. Confused.
Paper pushers? No, no! We are young and we are innovators. We know how to connect best to students, because we just graduated. We know how to communicate. We are smart, well-traveled, and fluent in multiple languages.
Being referred to as a paper pusher made me question every single academic choice I had ever made. And, I’m sure my inner dialogue will sound familiar to many of you.
Should I not have been an English major? Did my double major even matter? Did I really just spend four years taking out loans to afford my dream school… to do a job that an intern could be doing? Maybe if I had studied business my colleagues would take me more seriously and understand that I matter.
I’m supposed to be changing the world. I’m supposed to be guiding students to study abroad, and gain a global perspective. I’m supposed to be helping students step outside of their comfort zones. Even though my job position was low on the totem pole, I knew I was more than just a paper pusher.
That comment made me only want to work harder. Immediately, my next step was to consider Master’s programs to advance my education. Not just for the degree, but to continue learning and challenging myself.
In a sense, I was a paper pusher. I had to literally print out health forms and acceptance forms and bring them to our Program Officers to review. But that wasn’t what defined me, and I knew that the job was just a stepping stone.
The truth is, you will always have to start somewhere, and it’s usually at the bottom. The thing that you cannot do is let it keep you down. Be humble and patient in your first step, but remember that you have the power to change your future, and eventually to change the world.
Four years later, I’ve gone from being an assistant to co-managing a college admissions office as the Associate Director. I understand the importance of “paper pushing,” because I once had to do it. I see how the small things affect the big picture. I also see how studying two majors that I love, at a small, liberal arts university that I adore, turned me into the person that I am today. A person who believes that everyone is important and able to make a difference, especially millennials.
And, of course, it was a learning experience as well.
Don’t let the millennial stereotype be true
Yes, you can change this stereotype, or at the very least, take a step in the right direction. Be on time. Be attentive. Work hard. Don’t look for excuses. Don’t go to work hungover. And, if you do, make sure no one can tell.
Learn from great managers and terrible managers
Both will make you grow. You’ll learn what to do, and what not to do. And both do have the power to help you in your long-term career growth.
Don’t text or pick up your phone during a meeting
In fact, do not even take out your phone during meetings. Give the meeting your undivided attention. People will notice. And they’ll especially notice if you’re not paying attention because you’re on your phone.
Don’t let anyone tell you that you aren’t good enough
And, if they do, don’t get mad — prove them wrong. Work harder than you’ve ever worked before. You know what you’re doing, you know you deserve this job (and more). Let them see it too.
Don’t give up
You are young, and that is why you are going to change the world. You’re equipped with new ideas, energy, and have the sparkle in your eyes to keep learning. You will have setbacks, we all do. But you can rise above them as well.
And most importantly, when you start to manage the assistant, intern, the paper pusher — make sure to buy them coffee.
You trust someone wholeheartedly. There’s no way they could do anything to betray your trust. You feel entirely comfortable with them. You tell them everything. You’re more open with them than you’ve ever been with anyone.
No, it’s not easy, and you have every right to be angry or upset. Those are entirely normal reactions. But, being lied to, especially in a relationship, more than just sucks. In a way, it sets you up for disaster.
You no longer open up
How can you open up to someone now knowing there’s a chance you’ll just be betrayed again? Instead of risking this, you keep your guard up. You don’t reach out to others when you probably should, you don’t open up about anything, and you keep everything to yourself. You don’t want to relive that pain of being lied to, and why should you have to go through that again?
You question everything
“Wait, but how can this be true if this, this, and this happened?” You start not being able to take anything at face value anymore. There has to be some sort of catch, some sort of backstory, or some sort of other information that you’re not being told. You begin to overanalyze everything, even if you weren’t one to over-analyze things to begin with. But now, you have to. You have no choice, really.
You’re angry with yourself
You cannot believe that you didn’t catch the lie. That you could be played the way that you were played. That you ignored the red flags, ignored asking the right questions, and just accepted what you were told, because you trusted them. You cannot believe that you were so blind, and so foolish. You’re determined not to let that happen again.
You feel like you don’t know anything anymore
You always thought you could trust your views and thoughts on people, but now, how can you? It truly is like you know nothing anymore. You don’t know who you can or can’t trust, you don’t know who you can or can’t open up to, and you don’t know if someone is just going to come around and bite you in the butt once again. And the most frightening part? How can you trust yourself, after you were played like a fool?
You don’t easily trust people anymore
And that sets you up for failure in future relationships — both romantic wise and friend wise. A relationship needs to be built on trust, but unfortunately for you, you’ve been burned in the past. It won’t be easy to overcome this and start trusting people again. And that obviously has quite the negative affect.
I didn’t go away to college, so the first time I ever had a roommate was when I was well into my career. And that roommate just happened to be one of my closest friends.
There are all types of things — good and bad — that come along with having a roommate. When that roommate is one of your best friends, those things present themselves in different ways. And how you handle them will impact not just your living situation, but your relationship with someone whose presence in your life you value.
Rent and bills are business, even when your friend is involved
Do not be the person who needs to be asked more than once for the rent. If only one of you has your name on the lease, the other is responsible for paying the rent each month. That means the other roommate has to transfer the money over at least a few days in advance. Whether it’s with Venmo, by handing your friend cash, or some other way, do not ever slack off and pay late. It’ll put your friend and roommate in an awful spot. The same goes for bills (cable, internet, other utilities, etc.). Pay your share immediately.
Understand that you’re a team
If you’re a millennial who is living with another millennial, odds are that one or both of you has an active social life that often precludes you from paying attention to the cleanliness of the apartment. When you do have time to focus on it (at least once per week, unless you want visitors to think you’re a slob), help one another out. Dishes in the sink aren’t yours? Wash them anyway. The bathroom is filthy and you don’t want to clean it alone? Guess what, someone has to. Your roommate will recognize that you did something you didn’t have to, and take care of it for you next time.
Even though you’re close friends and have probably seen and done almost everything with this person, there are times when they’ll need space. Offer to be there for them if you think they’re in need, but back off if they reject it. If your friend comes home, and is furious for no reason, chalk it up to them having had a bad day. Don’t take it personally. And give them time to cool down.
Enjoy one another’s company
This seems obvious, right? You’re close friends who are living with one another. Hanging out and having fun should come naturally. But often, it doesn’t. If you both have full-time jobs, life will get in the way. And seeing each other every single day and night can take a bit of the shine off the friendship. But you’re close friends for a reason. Go out to dinner. Watch the game together. Sit on the couch and talk nonsense for a bit. Unwind.
Have an issue? Don’t let it fester
If your roommate/friend is doing something (or multiple things) that get on your nerves, tell them. If you keep it inside, you’ll start to resent them, while slowly going insane. That’s a bad combination. It can be awkward to tell your friend if something they do is bothering you. But the alternative is much worse. Tell them what’s on your mind. Your friendship and relationship as roommates will be better for it.
It’s no secret that millennials are looking for jobs, and attempting to forge stable careers, in a difficult market. Just look at the numbers.
As of March 2016, a Generation Opportunity report states that 12.8% of millennials ages 18-29 were unemployed. A May 2017 report from CNBC discusses how millennials are stereotyped as “job-hoppers,” but the reasons are not what they appear on the outside. Almost 90% of millennials indicated that they would stay in a job for more than ten years if promised salary increases, as well as “upward career mobility.” But, seeing as 36% left a job they liked to move on to a company where a better opportunity was offered, it can be deduced that collectively, we millennials aren’t getting those increases and mobility that we desire, and deserve.
While millennials continue to struggle in the job market, America has been watching as both elected and appointed leaders, with little to know experience in their respective fields, are essentially taking jobs that they are not qualified for.
Ah, the seemingly obvious example. Trump may have talked about hypothetically running for office back in 1987, but he didn’t actively start campaigning, and putting his metaphorical ducks in a row until 2015. In other words, he talked about being President, just as children do when they’re young, but did not prepare himself for the job through acquiring the correct education and training. His lack of foreign policy experience, as well as political experience as a whole, made him a completely unqualified and unfit candidate — not to mention the Twitter rants that took away (and continue to take away) from his legitimacy as a role model for the American people. This tweet kind of sums it up:
Hillary spent 40 years of her life building her career to lose the presidency to a man who picked up politics as a hobby last year.
While Bannon isn’t part of the “White House Gang” anymore, his appointment as Trump’s Chief Strategist caused many to scratch their heads. He possesses a great deal of political knowledge, but his political resume (you know, where you actually list jobs showing that you have worked in the political sphere) left little to be desired. Prior to Trump’s election, Bannon worked as his campaign manager. After Election Day, his new title was that of Senior Counselor. While Bannon admirably served our country as a naval officer, his true forte came when he “found success in entertainment finance.” What’s Bannon up to now? He’s back at his old gig as CEO of white supremacist news outlet Breitbart. The questions to be raised here? Why any President would appoint a known white supremacist supporter to any position, and why someone who made his success creating political documentaries would be offered the job of Chief Strategist.
Trump’s pick for the head of NASA has a bit of political experience. He has served as a Republican congressman representing his home state of Oklahoma since 2012, and also held the job of Executive Director of the Tulsa Air and Space Museum and Planetarium. He has also served our country as a Navy combat pilot, and currently continues his service as a member of the Oklahoma Air National Guard. Not a bad resume, right? But… one would think that the potential head of NASA would have some experience with, well, space. And Bridenstine doesn’t have that. Being a “big fan of the moon” does not a head of NASA make, and neither does reluctance to “study the climate.”
Sam Clovis Just a tip: the possible Chief Scientist of the United States Department of Agriculture should actually be… a scientist. And Clovis isn’t one. Sure, his credentials are impressive, as credentials generally go — “he holds a doctorate, but it’s in public administration, and not a scientific discipline.” What else is on Clovis’ resume? Creation of a blog that published posts indicating that homosexuality is a choice, and known opposition to farmers, a population that largely relies on the USDA. So, some very bad publicity, as well as a known grudge against what would be a key part of his constituency in this job.
The takeaways? We millennials should all become President because we once mentioned, possibly as children, that we’d like to be President one day. We should put together poorly produced documentaries about our non-inclusive political beliefs, and then, we’d be appointed to a very important office within the Cabinet. We should make it known how much we love something and then should be asked to be the head of a department. And, we should look to be appointed to positions that are very different than our respective backgrounds.
Once upon a time, parents read their millennial children stories to help them fall asleep, and to teach them about the world that they were growing up in.
At the time, these books gave us warnings about trusting strangers with very big teeth, and how pathological lying can prove fatal. Honesty and caution are important road marks for any responsible adult to follow, but even seemingly silly stories have their own pieces of advice to share. These books may not be fairy tales, but being open to their guidance as adults may make us a bit happier about our continuing journeys through adulthood.
REAL LOVE MAKES US “REAL” PEOPLE from The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams At first glance, the stuffed rabbit a young boy receives as a Christmas present is not much to look at. It doesn’t move on its own, and seems rather old-fashioned. The rabbit knows that the only way he can become real to the little boy is through the boy’s love for the stuffed animal. The rabbit sees little hope in becoming real, until he takes the place of another toy lost in the nursery. From then on, the boy and the rabbit are inseparable, that is, until the boy becomes very ill. All the toys and bedding in the nursery must be burned to prevent the disease from spreading, and as the velveteen rabbit mourns the end of his life with his beloved boy, a fairy appears and leads him to the forest to be with the real-life rabbits.
Truly, there is nothing as powerful as love. Not just the word love, or crushes, or lust, but real, genuine, unconditional love. This is the love from family, friends, mentors, and partners that can be life-changing. It transforms us into who we are meant to be.
YOUR OPPORTUNITIES ARE (STILL) ENDLESS from Oh, the Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss A common, yet thoughtful, gift for any graduate, the last book to be published while the author was still living is one of his most inspiring. The unnamed character in Oh, the Places You’ll Go! is leaving town and comes upon “The Waiting Place” (where people wait for things to happen) along their journeys. But the narrator makes it clear that the protagonist can go anywhere he chooses.
This lesson should not be reserved for those taking on new careers, or graduating high school or college. You can change your direction any time you want! It is never too late to embark on a new path.
EVERYONE HAS TO GROW UP from The House at Pooh Corner by A.A. Milne Even Christopher Robin’s time in the Hundred Acre Wood has to come to an end. It seems Piglet, Pooh, Eeyore, and Christopher Robin are all aware of this reality, and in the final chapter of a book full of adventures, Christopher Robin’s friends throw him a farewell party.
Growing up can be painful. A person leaves behind all the things he or she has known about the world, and who they have been to this point. Responsibilities can be overwhelming, and life is no longer as simple as visiting old friends. But as The House at Pooh Corner comes to a close, Pooh promises never to forget his friend Christopher Robin. We should never forget the places we have been, and the wonderful memories we made while we learning to grow up.
IT’S NOT ABOUT THE MATERIAL THINGS from How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss Sure, it’s a holiday favorite, but at the heart of How the Grinch Stole Christmas is the reminder that material things cannot make you happy, and being miserable hurts no one but yourself.
In this day and age, it is easy to see what we do not have, and compare ourselves to others. But does owning the latest iPhone give us anything but a fleeting sense of satisfaction? It wasn’t about the presents or trees in Whoville. Despite our collective desire to have it all, this is one lesson we should keep in our hearts all year long.
OUR DAMAGES DO NOT MAKE US WORTHLESS from Corduroy by Don Freeman Lonely and perched on a department store shelf, Corduroy is spotted by a young girl, Lisa, whose mother refuses to buy him because of a missing button on his overalls. Corduroy searches the store for the long-lost button, but to no avail. To his surprise, Lisa comes back into the store the next day without her mother, and purchases him with her own money. Once they arrive home, she sews a button on his clothing, happy to have found a friend.
Our shortcomings and scars do not make us less worthy of love and friendship. They may teach us painful lessons, but people who truly care for us will take the time to make us feel safe again. Knowing you are worthy of such love helps to stitch those lost pieces back together again.
As is the case with any type of media, some of these series are for niche viewing. Others however, are very relatable to millennials, and to the things we go though in all aspects of life, some on a daily basis.
“It started as slices of my life, or things I thought about,” said Alex Spieth, the series’ creator. “My character, Susan, grows up, falls in love with her boyfriend, and decides to leave New York. When I first started the show, it was a reaction to the year I’d just had. But what I’m thinking about doing now is different that what I was thinking about then.”
Before starting production of the series, Spieth, like many other millennials, struggled with the transition from college to adult life, which gave her a lot of inspiration for the show.
“As an actor, I had an agent right after college,” she said. “I was dropped after a year. I have always been a Type-A personality, and this was the first time that I had to examine what I had to do. I asked myself, have I been lied to? Have I been deluding myself? I needed something to remind me that I had something to offer.”
So, why should we watch it?
It deals with today’s dating scene
We all know how that can go sometimes, right? Remember that Valentine’s Day that you spent doing anything but something romantic? The main character spends one Valentine’s Day babysitting — and not for a well-behaved child, either. It also deals with the online dating struggle, which is relatable to so many of us. And remember that time that you had to deal with your ex, after you had broken up? There’s an episode for that. And it’s just as awkward as you’d think.
It addresses making good decisions, versus making bad ones
In that very same episode in which the main character goes on a dinner date with her ex, said ex is portrayed as the devil. In other words, spending time with that ex is a bad decision, and she needed to be reminded of that fact throughout. We’ve all been there. We’ve all needed to remember why that person is an ex in the first place, or why we shouldn’t rebound so quickly, or why we shouldn’t post that picture.
It understands your work struggle You know that bad day at work (or maybe bad days? weeks? months?) where whatever could go wrong, did go wrong? You spilt coffee on your white shirt, your desk phone rang off the hook while you had millions of other things to do, you ended up cleaning up after your colleagues who left a coffee pod in the Keurig again, you were interrupted by outside visitors (outside visitors? what does that even mean?), and maybe you were just a little hungover? This show gets it. It gets all of it.
It confronts some of the most difficult, as well as the most important, issues in our society
On a much more serious note, [Blank] My Life brings the important issues to the forefront of the conversation. One episode shows the scary truths about how rapes can happen anywhere, including on college campuses, and showcases the main character’s experiences with it. Another looks at mental health head-on. The main character finds herself with her life in a state of despair. She also has scary experiences, including hallucinations, brought on by certain situations. She contemplates leaving her now home in New York City, to see if it will improve both her life and, in turn, her health. While much of the above is often considered taboo to talk about in a public setting, it’s so important that the conversations around these difficult issues continue.
So, what’s next for the series? Is there more to look forward to? “We’re in the process of writing the next season,” Spieth said. “The past two seasons have been done piecemeal, and we don’t want to do that this time around. We’ll be filming in Pittsburgh next, and we really want to feel like this is ‘our project.’ We’re looking to do a movie, and we want to more that I haven’t already tried.”