Everything I learned re-watching Tracy Beaker as an adult
My ‘hayfever’ played up slightly at the emotional bits
If you grew up in England, were born in the 90s, and owned a television, there no way of avoiding Tracy Beaker – and nor should you have wanted to. The spunky foster care kid, with big hair and a big heart, wormed her way onto the television and shamefully making every child wish they lived in a cool care home like that too. I wanted to be Tracy Beaker so badly, with her best friend Ben, supportive Mike, and busy home full of other children who were a similar age to her.
When I finally settled down to re-watch it, and the theme song began the waves of nostalgia rolled over me, and I couldn’t believe this hasn’t been on the TV (in its original form, anyway) since 2005. The more I watched though, the more I realised that each character has something to teach us, even as adults.
Lesson One: When you’re over-the-top emotional just blame it on your allergies
We’ve all had that sob at 3am because we can’t cope with how an episode of our favourite TV show turned out, but at least this usually happens in the solitude of our bedroom. However when you end up letting out a silent tear in the kitchen because you’ve put salt not sugar in your tea (again), pretend that despite it being deepest winter your allergies are acting up, and of course you’re not crying.
Lesson Two: Fashion means nothing
I wouldn’t have necessarily pegged a sleeveless denim jacket as the must-have accessory for any teenage girl but if anyone could rock it, Tracy could. Tracy is a modern feminist icon in my opinion – wearing whatever she wanted, and pulling it off. We could all learn a lot from her free-spirited attitude to clothing.
Lesson Three: Being a sassy bitch is the best way to be
Tracy is unapologetically sassy, always right there with the cheeky one liners. Admittedly if she’d actually kept her mouth shut for more than a second she might have found life a little easier, but even her sass couldn’t push away Cam, and got her eventually adopted (until she was returned, heartbreaking). Her dgaf attitude could be a lesson to us all, and gives me hope that whilst Tinder isn’t working someone may eventually learn to love me, sass and all.
Lesson Four: If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again
Tracy really screws up. Like, a lot. This is something we have in common – no matter how hard I try I can’t seem to help putting my foot in it. So what? Tracy bounces back from basically everything life throws at her, and honestly makes me feel better about my complete inability to navigate any social situation.
Lesson Five: What you want might not be what you need
Okay, I’m being overdramatic here but the point still stands. I may want to have another Greggs Sausage Roll but I don’t actually need one. Likewise Tracy thinks she wants a big Hollywood lifestyle with her glamorous mum, not a crummy two bedroom flat with Cam, but what she needs is a loving home. This was another hayfever moment for me, and not just because I decided not to have the sausage roll.