Wednesday, November 16, 2011

NaBloPoMo Prompt of the Day: Adulthood

Prompt of the Day:

What is the moment that you leave childhood and enter adulthood? 
(Guest Prompt by Catherine Gildiner, author of After the Falls)



Through getting married, having a child, moving to a new city away from family, moving back to the city I grew up in, buying a house, separating from my husband, moving back in with my parents, getting my own apartment, moving to a better apartment, getting served with divorce papers, selling the house, buying a car, and, now, trying to wrap up the divorce...I can honestly say that being an adult kinda blows. 

But, sticking with the prompt, I don't think there is a set moment. I might have gotten married, but I still felt like a kid playing dress-up most of the time. I gave birth to Agent M, but there wasn't any sort of "I am a grown up now" moment (funny aside - to this day most people think I am his older sister because I don't look my age, I love it!). The beginning of the separation - forget feeling like an adult, I needed my parents so much through that time that I felt like I was in a cocoon most days, wrapped up tight and preparing before emerging back out into the big, scary world. 

I guess what I am trying to get at is that I don't think there is a set moment for entering adulthood. There are grown-up moments, and rites of passage, things that make you pause and think "Whoa, we're not a kid anymore". Buying a washer and dryer was one of those moments. Watching from the bridesmaid line as friends get married, buying a new car - and then scrambling to find the money for the payments, facing my parent's mortality when they get diagnosed with life-effecting medical conditions and start needing reading glasses. Those are the moments that personally hit me the most. But most days, I still don't feel like a "grown-up". I do adult "things", like the grocery shopping, the cleaning, the mum-business, going out with friends at 18-and-over locales....but I have always had this mental image of "adulthood" being only wearing polo shirts and mom-pants, as I lose my identity to Agent M's after-school functions and working an unrewarding job. 

And that is just not me. That works for some people, but not me. 

I'm wrapping this up - this has been a difficult prompt for me. It's given me a lot to think about and I don't feel like I can properly respond to it, since it brings up so many questions of what is adulthood, what is adulthood for me, etc. Maybe I will never feel like an adult. I'm okay with that. Or maybe my ideas of what an adult is will evolve as I evolve. Or maybe it will take something big for me to finally hit that "moment". I really don't know. 

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