Sunday, April 26, 2009

Being an Adult

What exactly is it that classifies you as an adult? Is it owning a home? Spending a tax return on extra mortgage payments? Pursuing a career? Contemplating procreation?

I have been 30 years old for most of my life. As the older sibling in a single parent family I definitely had to be more responsible than other 12 year olds. But then not nearly as responsible as my own mother had to be in an essential parent-less family when she was 12.

Helping take care of my brother and being self-sufficient myself were never really a problem for me. Babysitting him was way better than babysitting other, brattier children that I wouldn't be allowed to smack upside the head. And I'm just naturally self-sufficient (my Sunday morning breakfast mopes aside).

It's not my actions that make me adult. Because my actions are supportive of who I am. And who I have been since well before anyone could have mistaken me for an adult. I make extra mortgage payments and think responsibly about the future because that makes me happy. If I didn't do those things I would be stressed out and unhappy.

So is it a state of mind? Maintaining the ability to have a liberal mindset? Continuing to be open to new experiences? A willingness to take risks?

I used to think that the best thing about being an 'adult' would be workplace respect. Assuming competence, of course. Well, I have comptence in spades and I still find myself being treated like a child. Rules, regulations, monitoring of social activities. At 20 I expected that, at 25 I tolerated it, at 30 it's really starting to piss me off.

I need to know the secret. At the very least so I can get other adults off my case.


Paper Bag Princess said...

Adults are often grumpy and stressed out in the workplace - maybe you aren't projecting enough stress and frazzled-ness. (:

This will all sound silly, and I am mostly kidding but are you perchance small in stature? I am 5'3 but swear I get am taken a bit more seriously since I started wearing heels that take me up to nearly 5'6. Wear glasses - according to Sterling that helps too! (:

Lady Rose said...

I am also 5'3". I never even considered that height might be a factor. But heels hurt my back!! What's a small girl to do.

I think you're onto something with the stress thing though. I don't ever really get stressed out at work which seems to make people very suspicious. Like either I don't know what I'm doing or I don't have nearly enough to do.

I'm afraid I'll never fit in with the grownups.

Sterling Lynch said...

Good post, good questions.

I was 45 when I was 16 and now that I am 34 I think I'm about 23.

Adults do not exist. Most people are children who play dress-up and forget it is a game (or perhaps never realized). Seriously, look closely, you will see what I mean. Some of us are children who play along but know it is a game. High school uber alles.

Meg said...

I'm not sure it's height related. I'm 5'9'. I wear 3-inch heels on a regular basis and I'm still the forgotten stepsister of our team.

Then again, I'm also only 25 and in the middle of a fierce hate-hate relationship with the office chi. So whatevs.

Paper Bag Princess said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Paper Bag Princess said...

Oops, that deleted comment was me!

This is top secret - us office 30-somethings are a wee bit suspicious and borderline jealous of you office 20-somethings. You're younger and fresher and you haven't yet assimilated into the Borg. hee hee, just kidding.

One thing that I notice as I get older is that I never feel any older. I still feel like a lamb, when if fact I am on the threshold of muttonhood. ha ha ha! I totally get in now when I hear ridiculously old people say 'but I still feel young'.