Phoenix Lam and her mom

G Day Stories: Phoenix

Phoenix Lam-Phipps is a girly geek with a sarcastic streak. She works in digital communications and loves all things social. She is a cat lady, fitness fanatic, foodie and hockey fan. On the weekends, she can often be found trying out new restaurants after a run around the seawall or Instagramming photos of her cat. Her favourite movies include Star Wars, Anchorman, The Avengers, and anything to do with zombies. She also once took a Facebook Zombie Apocalypse Survival quiz and scored 92%. Thank you for sharing your G Day Story with us, Phoenix.

I am not sure about most adults, but puberty was a phase in my life I am happy to leave behind. Don’t get me wrong, I learned many life lessons then and have many fond memories:

  • Watching informative shows such as Save By the Bell
  • Hair scrunchies
  • Slap bracelets
  • Playing and dominating in Pogs (a lie, I was horrible)

The reason I say I am happy to leave that stage of my life behind is two fold. First of all, when you’re going through puberty, your hormones are straight up crazy. You won’t realize how emotional you are until you reflect back as an adult. I remembered EVERYTHING felt like a big deal. EVERYTHING was horrible or amazing. There was no middle ground. Let me assure you, you will grow out of this phase. Your hormones will settle down.

Phoenix Lam and her mom

Phoenix Lam with her mother

And while your mother picking you up from school and screaming from the car that you’re late visiting the doctor for your toe rash (while you’re chatting with your crush, who happens to be the most popular person in school) may seem like the most horrific/embarrassing thing ever? A) Life will hand you much worse (and you’ll survive it easily) and B) the feeling of wanting to vomit and having the ground swallow you whole so you never have to see your crush will pass. In fact, in a few years you’ll look back fondly and have a nice chuckle over the incident. When you are older, you will even freely share this story as an example of how you survived childhood to become the amazing woman you have become.

The second reason why I am happy to leave puberty behind was the culture conflict I was caught in. My family immigrated from Hong Kong when I was young. They held onto traditional Chinese culture while all my friends in school were Caucasian. This meant a constant cultural clash in all things at home and in school.

I think the thing that challenged me the most was the idea of independence or lack thereof. Most of my friends seem to have freedom awarded to them once they were in high school. Going out later, wearing make up, dressing how they wanted, dating, getting hair cuts that don’t involve a family member wielding a pair of scissors you used the night before on your dinosaur project.

Me? I was constantly arguing with parents and trying to explain why no self-respecting 11 year-old would wear outfits picked out by grandma (it happened!). Because let’s be honest, no one appreciates retro style or vintage until you are in your 20s. So for me, this period was marked with many discussions (ok, screaming matches) with my mother about my curfew, makeup, Doc Martens and of course boys. This is on top of all the arguing a normal teenager would engage in with their parents because they’re emotional and angsty (see reason number 1).

I never won; ok there was that ONE time I got to go to a sleepover party at my friend’s house, but I promptly broke my glasses by sitting on them by accident and that pretty much ended all sleepovers. I am immensely glad my mother never let me win. My childhood, while not full of glitter makeup and cute outfits, was full of things that were useful to me later in life. Like math lessons, volunteering and keyboarding class (yes back when I was a kid, you took classes to learn how to type). Not to say if you don’t have those things in your life you won’t be successful, those things are just part of who I am. And to risk sounding self-absorbed, I kind of love me. I love the me that my parents raised.

So as much as your parents may seem lame and totally not ‘get you,’ they have your best interest at heart and are just trying their hardest to give you the best childhood/young adulthood they can. So do me a favour and give them a break? Or at least refrain from rolling your eyes ALL the time. They do know some stuff…and when you ‘grow up’ eventually, you may even find your parents to be pretty cool and want to hang with them in your spare time.

That’s all from me. I never really know how to end blog posts…normally when I write food reviews, I ask people to tweet me their thoughts on the restaurants I have reviewed after they have tried it. So when you’re grown into a adult and if Twitter is still around, tweet me? (You can tweet Phoenix @phoelam, and check out her blog at Two Girls One Blog.)

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