Friday, August 10, 2012

On growing up (or choosing not to)

I was reading an article today that discussed the age at which most people feel ‘grown up’.  Apparently it’s not 21, the age at which we can legally get drunk in public and be absolutely ridiculous.  According to the author, more people feel like 30 is the age they finally felt like an adult.  Arbitrary age and article aside, it’s an interesting question.  Thirty is such an imposing, scary age.  Lots of people pin their desires to certain ages – perhaps you have a bucket-list of what you hope to accomplish by the time you’re 30, 40, 50, or even 60.  By 30, people want to be married, have a successful career, have a baby, own a house, travel the whole world, publish a paper, or maybe all of those.

I feel so so far from being any kind of an adult.  Sure, I do grown-up things like paying my rent and saving for retirement.  But I also consider a salami to be an acceptable meal.  Or a bag of chips with onion dip.  Or tea with cheese.  I have eaten all of those as dinner.  And I pretty much have no responsibilities.  The last thing I ordered on Amazon was a 24-pack of candy cigarettes.  And I love it.

There are a number of financial milestones that I anticipate might feel bigger to me than simply living alone & paying bills.  Paying for (and attending) grad school, getting married (yes, that’s a financial decision too), and buying a house or apartment feel like they’d be big.  Right now, I feel so far from being an adult, but that’s ok.  Who’s in any hurry to grow up?  Not me!

I’ve had moments, though, when I almost felt adult.  For work: when I booked my first solo work trip this week.  That’s right – new week I’m travelling to a client for a day, all by myself!  Contrast this with when I started a year ago and was completely useless.  At home:  when friends visited for the weekend and I assembled a feast for them.  Apparently I have the urge to feed people when they visit (and they don’t seem to mind too much – good thing I stock up on yummy stuff when I know I’ll have visitors.  My fridge right now contains only beer, cheese, bacon, and a tomato.  And some things I should have thrown out weeks ago.)  In my relationship: when something happened in my family (everything’s ok now), I only wanted to call Sebastien, and he was willing to drop everything.  Financially:  I felt pretty badass on the day I opened and maxed out my Roth.

On the other hand:  it’s raining right now, and I lost my umbrella a few months ago.  So I’m thinking about how I don’t want to go to work, and how that could be arranged (real mature).  If only.

What about you?  Do you feel grown-up right now?  Is there too much on your bucket list to do before you’d allow for that to happen? ;)

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