A Chemical Madness

Prague, Czech Republic, 2011.

Prague, Czech Republic, 2011.

Everybody’s youth is a dream, a form of chemical madness.

– F. Scott Fitzgerald

The intoxicating light of novelty casts its glow on all the experiences of our youth. We readily surrender ourselves to new, unprecedented adventures, oftentimes oblivious to the immense power of these underlying decisions in henceforth shaping our lives. The seemingly inconsequential quality of surrealism lining our youth emboldens us to live fiercely, arming us with an intense, unparalleled passion that appears to be inexhaustible. It were as if we were incombustible; we were shining lights that would never fade, burning as brightly as the very first day.

We fall in love. We break hearts and have our own broken. We navigate the world around us, fearlessly and pregnant with fear simultaneously. We explore our identities through the choices we make, consciously and inadvertently. We seek to find and define our unique selves, testing the boundaries of socially constructed norms ceaselessly. Disappointments and heartaches fail to wholly fatigue or numb us; we drink it all in, voraciously, as we find ourselves time and time again at the receiving end of lavish helpings of unfulfilled expectations, of fallen pride, and of bruised hearts. Each indelible mark left on our hearts adds to the richness, intensity, and diversity of our fleeting youth. We think ourselves invincible – for we are young, and the possibilities, endless.

We will never again be as young as we are at this very moment; here and now is the youngest we would ever be from this point forward. As our youth surreptitiously passes us by, may we always have the courage to do what is spontaneously necessary and revel in the magical, chemical madness that is our youth.

– Agnes Chew

We are stratified creatures, creatures full of abysses, with a soul of inconstant quicksilver, with a mind whose color and shape change as in a kaleidoscope that is constantly shaken.

– Pascal Mercier

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