I am in 4th grade and all I wish is to be is an adult. I asked my mom if I could shave my legs and she said not yet, not until I started my period. I know that is bound to be years because I don't even have boobs yet - I know because I check for them every day. One afternoon I went into a warm bath and found some shaving cream and an old blue bic razor of my dads. I shaved all the fine golden hair off and my legs felt so grown up. I proudly showed my mom. "You're going to have to do this for the rest of your life now," she told me as if it were a BAD thing.
Feel free to insert your own funny comment here. The picture is begging you.
"Good!" I thought. I want to be an adult. I want to shave my legs all the time. I want to buy Sun In and get a body wave in my hair and buy brand name Ocean Pacific shorts and actual Guess jeans, not the knock offs my mom got me.
I remember the day I became an adult. I had moved to Los Angeles in 1999. For a boy. It's always that or acting, ask any transplant that lives there.
And the boy and I? We didn't work, thank gosh. I wouldn't let myself truck back to Missouri without at least attempting California on my own though. I got a tiny little baby studio apartment in Brentwood and signed a 6-month lease and started again from scratch. I would sit on my teeny back porch overlooking an alley and smoke cigarettes and cry. I had a tiny fridge and two burner stove (that I never used once) and I was scared --which was fine because I was just a kid still trying to find my way.
I got past that horrible hump and one day I moved into a real adult-sized apartment. The year was 2002. Kelly Clarkson won American Idol. My Big Fat Greek Wedding was released. George Bush created the Department of Homeland Security to fight threats of terrorism. My new apartment had a regular sized stove and even an oven (both of which of course, I never used). However, it didn't have a refrigerator- I had to provide it. A real, taller than me, grown up freezer and fridge. I went into Best Buy, nervous and alone. I selected a model based on cost and cuteness. I scheduled a delivery date. I calculated how many Gap tank tops I could have bought instead and silently mourned all 36 of them. I charged on my only credit card, the one with the whopping $599 limit. And I signed something important that I didn't read because it was lengthy and boring. Bam- right then as I was signing I just knew it. I was officially an adult.
And now I am (holy shit) 40. I've been on this earth for forty freaking years. 40 is old as dirt and CERTAINLY an adult according to both 9 and 28 year old me. And sometimes I so desperately want to be free of adult obligation. I could name 87 things that is great about being a kid. I bet you could too- try it. I want to sleep until 10am. I want to at least want to make outrageous and impractical decisions. I want to sign without reading the small print. I want to spend every Monday at the beach reading. Sometimes I just wish I could have someone else make all the hard and scary decisions for me. Sometimes it all just feels like too much. Adulting isn't nearly what I thought it would be.
That doesn't mean it's bad though. No way. The reason I can name 87 great things about being a kid is because I'm not one. It's easy to forget all the hard parts. It's easy to forget the good parts of adulting, but really, there are many. No one really tells me what to do--When to go to bed, when to wake up, when to eat, what to eat. Sometimes I have to do things I wish I didn't have to do- but no one is making me. I get to stay up as late as I want too, which I often do. I can dress any way I want. I can go to Church or not go to Church. I can color my hair without asking anyone. I can get a tattoo if I want, which I don't but I STILL CAN!!! I can have wine and chocolate, even at the same time. I can eat cookies while hiding in the pantry without getting in trouble. And now when I shave my legs I actually feel like I accomplished something big for the day. But by a million- by far the best part ever is that I get to help nurture and raise my two own tiny human beings into this world.
Nothing about being a mom (or an adult) is what I expected. It's exhausting and humbling and scary and provides a funnel for the greatest love that has ever existed. They are even worth sometimes turning on the stove.
What's your favorite thing about adulting?
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