Monday, March 03, 2014

Adulthood

Sometimes, I look at my life and wonder when I'll grow up. Not in a negative way, but just wondering what it looks like to be an adult.

I don't feel like I'm living under my parents' rule or authority, and I don't feel like I have to live by anyone else's guidelines. But I don't feel much like a "grown up," yet. Which is odd because I've been married for six years, lived on my own for seven years, payed rent on three different places (including two in a state where I didn't grow up), bought my own car, my own home (yes, I have a mortgage payment), and I even pay my own taxes, though I make the incredibly adult decision of paying a professional to do those taxes for me.

But when do I start to feel like my parents must have felt when they made that sudden and magical transition from kids to adults? When do I stop feeling like a fun-loving kid who gets to do things that make him smile and face the world as an adult who must sigh and do his chores, pay his bills, and go to work on time? When does my "free time" become time that is consumed by things that HAVE to be done? Things that didn't get done because I was working? Is it when I have kids? Or do I get to have fun when I'm a parent, too?

It's been a weird couple of years. I'm less than a year from thirty, I live in my own home, and most of my friends are married, divorced, and/or parents. I'm still trying to figure out this "career" thing, and part of me wonders if I should go back to school, though with all the "free time" I bragged about earlier, I don't actually have the time to go back to school. And if I did have the time, I certainly wouldn't have the money.

I wonder, though: is THAT adulthood? Making choices for the future, even if they're not necessarily the ones we want to make? I don't want to go back to school, so that's an easy decision. But what about Beyond the Trope and my constant attempts to get up before work to get writing done? I'm seeking education in places that WILL move my writing forward. And I'm forging friendships with people who I get along with. People I enjoy working with.

It just seems like Adulthood is supposed to make me have less free time to pursue those goals without quitting my job, or something. But I don't have to quit my job. As much as I'd like to write full time, I like what I do for a living. And it pays better than anything else I'm "qualified" for. Even though my qualifications include almost twenty years in the same industry.

Anyway. I don't know where I was going with all of that. I just know that I've been thinking about it a lot, lately. I have found that I like the idea of working somewhere with people I consider my friends. People I can play games with. People who don't hate each other. A community more than just a place of business.

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