Wednesday, July 13, 2011

When does adulthood arrive?

One week from today, I will have successfully completed the first year of my thirties. Hooray!!

When I was a teenager, I remember thinking thirty sounded so old.  And so far off.  I couldn't even begin to imagine what my 30-year-old self would be like, although I figured I'd have good job, a husband, a house and a kid by now.  Two out of four isn't bad, right?  I figured I'd have my life together and everything would be smooth sailing (this is why I can relate to Jenna in "13 Going on 30," which may be on my viewing list this weekend).

I don't know that I ever really dreaded my thirties, but I did join in the lamenting when my peers did.  It seemed like the thing to do, and I figured they knew something I didn't.  But as I got older, some of my friends had threes in the first column of their age, and they told me how awesome it was.  I started to think maybe, just maybe, my thirties would be OK.  So far, they've been better than OK.  Way better than my twenties.  I can't pinpoint what feels better or what's changed (me, I suppose), but I do know the thirties have been great to me.

So, I'm almost 31. I own a house and a car (yes, it's completely paid off!). I have a good job with a retirement plan (finally!).  But I really don't feel like an adult sometimes.  The bills that continue to arrive in the mail and my excitement over new household appliances remind me that I'm no longer a child, but if I had to go solely on how I felt, I'd say I don't feel like an adult most of the time.  I feel like I'm lacking some things that would qualify me as an adult.  Allow me to list those things for you ...

The ability to hard boil an egg, fold a fitted sheet and sew on a button. 
Seriously.  I can't do any of these things.  I feel like an adult woman should be able to perform these tasks with ease. Thus, I can't be an adult woman.  Also, I still have trouble shaving my legs.  How is this possible? I've been doing this for the better part of the last 20 years, yet I still miss spots and cut myself. What gives?  And should I also mention that I have a poor record of keeping plants alive?  I received two as housewarming gifts, and they both died within a month.  What's wrong with me?  Good thing for Cleo and Casey that cats aren't as fragile.

An adult's closet.
For the first several years of my professional life, I worked in newspapers, and, thus, my daily wardrobe consisted mostly of tshirts and jeans.  This past year, I transitioned into a setting with a business casual dress code.  It's not like I had to go out and buy suits and heels (thank goodness!), but it's definitely been a battle.  I pretty much have two pairs of dress pants I like and maybe ten tops.  My co-workers can attest to this ... if they've paid any attention to me.  I'm not sure.  Either way, my tshirt collection is still ridiculous.  It pretty much fills the closet in the guest room, and even though I rarely wear some of the shirts, I can't seem to part with any of them.

A tolerance for tequila.
I had a bad experience with it when I was 20, and now the mere smell of it makes me nauseous.  Shouldn't an adult be able to get over that and enjoy the occasional margarita?  Or, because of that early experience, am I sentenced to a life of to avoiding Patron? (Shame on those who tell me it'll be fine and order a Three Wise Men for me for my birthday.)

A serious relationship.  I'm not just talking currently, I mean ever. 
I've gone on an embarrassingly low number of dates in my life and have yet to be involved in any relationship I'd categorize as serious.  On the whole, this hasn't been a bad thing.  It's given me a lot of freedom and fed my strongly independent nature.  Every now and then, I get a twinge of wanting to have someone in my life, but it's usually pretty fleeting.  Usually. I'll get back to you in a few days and let you know if it's passed.

So ... if I'm not an adult yet, when will it be here?  When I'm 40?  50?  

Will I ever figure out how to shave the back of my thigh?  Make deviled eggs?  Put together a fabulously professional outfit? Drink tequila without my stomach protesting? Turn a crush into a boyfriend?

I guess I'll have to wait and see. In the meantime, I'll continue loving my thirties.

P.S.  This post was inspired by one I read from The Frenemy last week.  Love her.  I find myself nodding and smiling a lot when I read her brutally honest and candid posts.


  1. heh. According to your list, I'm an adult cuz I can do all that stuff! But, I don't feel like one at all. I'm actually working on a post about how I'm already starting to mourn the death of my 20s...even though I technically have 56 weeks left. Oy.

  2. I think folding a fitted sheet is impossible!


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