I felt like a grown up way before I was actually one. After college when I rented my first tiny studio apartment and was offered my own job with a paycheck at a PR firm, I definitely felt very mature, despite the fact I lived on ramen noodles and beer.
When I became engaged at twenty five, I believed I had made it to adulthood.
Marriage and owning a condo is a very grown up thing to do, I thought. After all, we signed very official papers that were legally binding.
Pregnancy is common for adults, I attended my appointments solo playing the role of the person I believed I was meant to be and that independence continued after the birth of my first born. I was too proud to ask for help assuming if I was old enough to birth a child I should be old enough to manage the long days, scary doctor appointments and lonely evenings.
Hosting both mine and my husband's family for Thanksgiving was quite a mature act and I felt the stress only grown ups know when our water heater went out on Thanksgiving day. Also, when the fire truck came to our house after our mini grease fire.
Juggling two needy children and a rambunctious puppy, cooking for my family, paying the bills, cleaning, buying a new home and enrolling kids into the right schools made me believe that I had reached that pinnacle point of pure adulthood.
Ironically, it wasn't until recently when we moved closer to my parents and I've accepted their generosity and help that I realized I will always be my mom and dad's child and they will always love and help me just as I do for my own little ones regardless of age. Suddenly, I don't feel the need to be the grown up and am happy when my mom offers to drive me to the DMV or bake brownies for the PTA.
My 5th grader wants to be a grown up. He begs to sit at the adult table at family functions and prefers hanging with us than most of his peers. He believes he knows it all, has everything figured and out and has little need for help from his parents (besides packing his lunch every day, driving him everywhere, reminding him to make his bed and buying him clothes and food.)
I remind him to enjoy being young. I rushed to be an adult and I wish I slowed down and appreciated the time before becoming a grown up a little more.
After all, I still enjoy karaoke, jumping on a trampoline, going down water slides and coloring alongside my daughter.
I don't see the rush to be a grown up.
When did you first feel like a grown up?