This weekend marks a special occasion for me. I have been married for a year. An ENTIER year! This got me to thinking about being a grownup and what it means and what it takes to be one. Because in my mind someone who is married a year is a grownup yet I don't feel like one.
I have had many conversations with my family and with my friends about this subject of being a "grownup" and if they do in fact feel like grownups.
Lately all the people around me seem to be making what I would classify as grownup decisions. One friend is engaged, one is having her first baby, my sister just bought a house and I am no longer a newlywed ( I think that status ends after the first year but hey I could be wrong). These acts all feel so grown up to me but I hardly ever feel like a grownup.
When I was little there were a series of events where I thought once I accomplished them I would finally feel like a grownup and I usually did for like a day and then it just disappeared.
There was the turning the BIG ONE OH. When I was little I thought "hey when I am ten then I am a big girl. I mean that's double digits!" I became ten and realized that there were so many more things I couldn't do yet. But all that would be solved when I could drive!
I got my learner's permit the week after I turned 15 and got my drivers license two weeks after I turned 16. The power to drive where I wanted, when I wanted (as long as my mom approved) what more could I want? Oh right I wanted to get out of high school. That would make me a grownup!
Ahhh graduation day. I already had college picked out and could kiss my high school goodbye! No more homework (yeah i was delusional) no more having to sit in one building all day long (still delusional) and I was going to be living on my own (parents paying of course)! Oh right, that whole parents paying part (and them being parents in the first place) meant they wanted me to get good grades and be accountable for my work. Ok Ok when I graduated college THEN I would be a grownup.
Graduation day the second. What is more exciting than graduating college? Seriously, how much more grownup can you get? I worked hard, I studied hard and I met the strict guidelines and expectations set by the university. But those people with healthcare, living unassisted by their parents and could go shopping and buy what they wanted without getting permission seemed more grown up....
Full time job. Wow! Now this probably made me feel grownup the longest of everything. Going to work 9-6, health insurance, monthly pay check, working all day every day in the same building at the same desk (what was that I thought was over in high school again?) but then I realized I had no idea what I was doing or what I was talking about. I felt all the time like other people knew what was going on and I had no clue. I remember having a conversation with my sis
Me: they want me to do a ppt and presentation. I have no idea what they are talking about
Sis: that's cause they don't know what they are talking about
Me: but i'm going to do this ppt and presentation and then they'll see that I am totally confused and that I am faking it!
Sis: they are all faking it
Sis: just do the presentation and pretend like you know what you are talking about and that it all makes sense and they will pretend they know what you are talking about too. No one wants to be the one who doesn't know what's going on.
Me: so this is all pretend? Everyone fakes that they know what they are talking about?
Sis: pretty much
By this time I figured getting married wouldn't really do it for me either. I still wouldn't feel like a grownup... In fact it took a long time for me to realized I was married. MARRIED! I am legally attached to another human who did not have anything to do with me being born. I still look at him and think "I can't believe we go married. We are married"
Don't get me wrong I have no regrets on getting married. I truly married a wonderful guy who learned I am not a morning person, that I say I don't like things even when I haven't tried them and that I am stubborn as all get out. He as excepted these, what I call quarks (but you might call them something different) and has chosen to love me anyways. He is fabulous.
But still getting married did not make me feel like a grownup. My sister bought a house and my friend got pregnant and all I could think was "gosh they are such 'grownups'". I'm convinced I am not grown up enough for such steps in my life. But really does anyone really ever feel like a grownup? Do you ever feel old enough or experienced enough for the next step, whatever that is? I don't think so. I think people just jump in with both feet and adjust.