When I was ten, I first started staying home. Sometimes I would be home alone for four whole hours. It was very exciting.
When I was eleven, I spent a week away from home with no parents, relative, or friends in the company of lots of strange people. (This is otherwise known as 'girl's camp'.) This was also exciting, but not nearly as much fun. I felt much older and grayer at the end of it, and proud of my survival- the crying hardly counts.
When I was thirteen (a week away from fourteen; my birthday has put me on the shy side of a lot of these age limits) I went to my first dance, which was also exciting but almost no fun at all.
And now, at seventeen, I have reached the next coming-of-age marker.
I went on a walk. A two mile walk. Which took an hour. By myself.
Can't you just feel the antiquity radiating out from me?
On my scary and dangerous walk I met: one man, two cars, four excited dogs, and one pony who might've come to meet me except it had expended a lot of effort in finding the absolute sunniest spot in its yard and wasn't going to budge.
The adrenaline is still rushing through me.