It’s funny to realize that I’m closing on my 29th birthday and I don’t feel like I’ve gotten to be a full grown up yet. Yes, I pay my own bills. Yes, I live alone and I do my own laundry. Yes, I do work.
No, I don’t have a child, nor am I married. No, I don’t have the gorgeous house with the white picket fence in the suburbs everyone is told they want. I’m not really sure I want to have a house like that. Think about all the time I would spend cleaning!
I feel there is somewhere a checklist to what being a full adult human being that I’m missing; yet, at the same time, I don’t think I want to find it.
Maybe this feeling comes from still being a student. A PhD student salary might do that to you too, I guess. I can’t complain though. I love learning. I’d be the forever student if I could only get a good salary and free weekends to go along with it.
Maybe this feeling comes because I haven’t gotten where I want to be. I want to write full time, but…
…sometimes I struggle with my own fears of not being good enough.
…sometimes I struggle because my work leaves me too exhausted.
…sometimes I feel being a full time writer is what happens to others, to the privileged few.
I want to be an artist, yet I also want the economic security that comes with a full time job. Not the best combination for someone who loves planning all her activities so she knows when she is free to improvise…
When I was a kid I thought all these doubts would go away when I was a grown up. I thought I would have the answers and the path to my life would be clear. All I needed to do was work hard to get there. I’m not seeing it happen and that conflicts with the anxiety monster that lives inside me.
I feel that we never fully grow up, that we go through life trying to meet the expectations imposed by others before us and we do our best to manage through the murky path. Some rebel, some relish the expectations, some become wallpapers, some forget what having fun is… Some succeed and some fail.
I’m somewhere halfway through. I want to rebel from what is expected, but at the same time I want the security that comes with following expectations. It’s a never-ending rollercoaster of feelings! Up, then down, sometimes even sideways and upside down.
I do know I don’t want to lose my inner child underneath the worries of work and money and failed relationships. I love being able to jump up and down from excitement just because I get to see the newest Marvel movie or animated short. I love mooning over Henry Cavill or Benedict Cumberbatch and fret about what would I say if I ever were to meet them. I love being able to enjoy games and books. I love feeling like a over-sugared 5 year-old whenever I have an idea I find particularly clever.
I don’t know if I want to grow up. I don’t know if I can’t stop it from happening…
Maybe we are always children pretending to be grown ups.