Tuesday, June 23, 2015

What Makes a Grown Up?

This photo has very little to do with the post except that dressing up to take photos in a field isn't very adult. Or is it?

My brain has been swirling the last week or so trying to figure out why I don't feel like a grown up and what, in the future, could possibly cause me to finally believe in my own adultness. I'm tempted to start a poll of all the adults I know to find out what made them feel like an adult.

At 26, I'm old enough to vote, drink, smoke, and rent a car. I'm nearly two years married with a joint bank account. I'm four years into a career in which I'm expected to make business decisions and lead a staff of 10-30 people (who all listen to me, for some reason). I've signed a lease, bought a car, filed taxes, and registered for my own health insurance. I've voted in elections and traveled to several continents. I've moved away from home, made new friends (and kept the old), and learned to write thank you notes. I have had ice cream for dinner and leftover pie for breakfast. All good adult things.

I admit that nearly every day I make adult decisions and conduct myself in the manner of an adult but half the time I'm thinking to myself "is this at all convincing? how are people believing me? did she really just call me ma'am?" If I had to give you the age I feel it's much closer to 19 than to 26.

When do the adult-y feelings kick in? Is it after having kids? Is it after buying your first home? Does it kick in after five years of working full time? 10? Do you feel like an adult once all your towels match and you've picked out wallpaper? Is it different for every person? Does everyone just pretend to be an adult until one day they wake up and believe it about themselves?

At this point I'm betting that last one. As it goes, fake it until you make it!

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