Another belief of mine: that everyone else my age is an adult, whereas I am merely in disguise. - Margaret Atwood
Ten things that make me feel like a grown up. Another 'let's be real!' category. While I hide it well (I think) and am really careful about letting anyone know the real reality of it: I'm masquerading as a grown up. For real. I have snatches of being a grown up when I get all the things done and what it looks like to the world is happening actually IS happening, but they don't last for long. Then I'm back to creating the illusion that I'm a grown up. This post had me laughing my *ss off because I could have written it. Probably not as well, though.
I wonder though. I can't be only me that never quite feels like I have the grown up thing down, can it? Most days I look around and think that everyone else has their sh*t together and that I'm the only one that still feels like that second grader that should have gone to the bathroom before she left the house (and I mean that as a metaphor, but as I age it becomes more and more literal. TMI? THAT makes me feel like less like a grown up and more like an old lady!)
- Travelling. The whole of it, planning, packing, getting myself to the airport with my suitcase, my carry on (filled appropriately with knitting, audiobook, snacks, etc), my license (except for that time when I realized the night before we were leaving for Maui that mine had expired and I was so afraid to tell Pete and then I remembered that I HAVE A PASSPORT!!! so I kept it a secret until we were in line at the airport and they did let me use my passport to get on the plane and WHEW!), getting on a plane, landing and getting off, renting a car, finding my lodging and doing what I went to do there. ALL WITHOUT MY DAD TO HELP ME THROUGH IT!!!!
- Driving far away by myself. GPS has made this so much easier it hardly counts. Oh, and related, staying in a hotel by myself. I love going away with Pete and the girls, but I love going away by myself as well.
- Drinking coffee. I don't really drink coffee, but when I was young, even in high school, coffee was a 'grown-up' drink. My kids? Thanks to their father they became caffeine addicts in middle school. Might not have happened if Dunkin' Donuts weren't on every corner these days. (Really, we live in a small town in New Hampshire and we have 5 of them within a mile or two from our house. Add to that the Heavenly and Starbucks....)
- Helping my family through things, like hard stuff. Like illness and cancer. Sitting in doctor' offices and hearing bad news and good. Helping to get them well or to move on to the next life. Planning for their futures or their funerals.
- Going to the funerals. I am totally not trying to be morbid or sad, but here is the truth. We have had so many more funerals over the last year and I guess that is what happens when you are grown up. The generation that brought us here is aging and along with that more of our friends are getting sick or dying and it feels not only like I'm a grown up, but maybe aging as well. BUT! I also feel the resilience of the human spirit in me and see how we all go on to happy things and times.
- Keeping people alive. By that I mean the ones I gave birth to. And not even just alive, they thrived and were healthy and when they weren't healthy I did things to get them healthy again. I made choices about parenting and nurturing and stuck with them. I taught them things. I helped them to grow up to be lovers of books and music and the arts and sports and each other and their dad (he helped by being awesome, but I have seen what a mother can do to make her kids not like their dads. Making sure my girls saw love and respect from their mom to their dad was part of my philosophy of child raising) and respect themselves and because of or in spite of my shoddy parenting they are pretty decent, every single one of them. I'd like to say I'm proud, but on my best day I'm not sure I really had anything to do with it. At least one of them was pushed into this world nearly fully formed and practically an adult herself. Anyway, I'm still a kid, so looking it over, maybe we raised each other, this family of mine.
- Keeping a plant alive which comically enough, I find much harder than a kid. The kids do have an advantage, they cry when they are hungry and learn to talk and nag. Now that I that I examine it, I was just trying to shut them up! Plants need to be louder.
- When I DON'T buy the yarn because I remember all of the yarn I already have and suddenly the future doesn't seem as limitless as it did when I bought all the other yarn and I still have to knit that, right? and it seems like just yesterday I had all the time in the world and now I look at it all neatly organized in containers next to the dresser and containers filled with fabric next to the needlepoint canvases next to the ornament kits next to the cross stitch........ I'm running out of time.
- When I order a drink or buy alcohol and I don't get asked for my i.d. Remember when you ordered that first legal drink and you smugly produced your I.D. for the server because, 'hell yeah! I am so grown up and legal!' Yeah, that? That wasn't grown up. NOT having to pull your wallet out and prove how old you really are? THAT! is grown up.
- Knitting for my little grand-baby, growing and yet to be born. If that doesn't inspire grown up feelings, I don't know what will.
Four. There is a difference between 'grown-up' and 'responsible', right? I feel responsible a lot of the time, yet at the same time maybe not grown-up and the other way around. Everybody is faking their way through it, right? Even you people who have big important jobs and heal people or run big corporations or whatever..... DON'T LET ME DOWN, PEOPLE!