Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Congratulations! You are a Grown Up Now

I've heard many a friend, family member and blogger wonder aloud when they will start to feel like a grown up. Despite the idea that we are technically adults at the age of 18, I don't think I know a single person who felt even slightly grown up until they were at the very least in their late 20s. Because, let's be honest here: being a grown up is fucking terrible.

I was one of those annoyingly precocious kids who always wanted to be an adult from a very young age. I wanted to be taken seriously. Part of it was that I had strong, intelligent opinions for as long as I can remember and I wanted those to be taken seriously. I was very lucky that my mom always did give me that respect, even when I was being a snotty little know-it-all. But then I actually started to grow up. I went out on my own and worked full time at a shitty job I hated for almost no money (and really, isn't that sort of the definition of being a grown up?) from the time I was 19 or so.

Despite my desire to be the best grown up, I failed pretty spectacularly at it for the first few years. And by "failed pretty spectacularly", I mean I did what EVERY OTHER 19 year old on their own for the first time does. I pissed away my money on booze and Wendy's value meals. I ran up the one credit card I had so that every payment I made just barely covered the previous month's late or over-the-limit fee. I did not have cable or internet. I did not wash dishes and I only did laundry when the situation became desperate. I may have been a legal grown-up, but I was not wearing that title well.

With my 30th birthday just a few sad, short weeks away, I started thinking about this whole grown-up business. How do you know when you're really there? Well, dear readers, I think I've figured it out:

1. Your Drinking Recovery Time Slows. Significantly. I remember back in the day, when all I needed was a couple of extra hours of sleep, a glass of water and McDonald's breakfast to cure a hangover. Now? Now I need the number of recovery DAYS equal to how many drinks I had. And I spend those days with a perpetual headache and the drinking shits.... speaking of shits though...

2. You Are No Longer Embarrassed to Take a Shit at Work/in a Public Bathroom. I used to hold it for HOURS. I would not ever shit in a public bathroom. What if the strangers in that bathroom heard me straining or- god forbid- SMELLED MY POOP? WHAT IF THEY SMELLED MY POOP YOU GUYS? Apparently I was under the impression that I was the only person in the world with a colon. Now? Eff that. I will take all the shits in all the places. That being said, oh my god, please fucking double-check your flush when you shit in a public bathroom. I do NOT need to see that.

3. You Learn the Correct Combination of Lady Care Products to Avoid Blood Stained Pants. I can't tell you how many pants I ruined in my teens and early 20s. You know what though? I'm a fucking grown-up now and I no longer shop at Rainbow so my pants cost more than $12. A lot more. I would venture to say that I could buy 2 pairs of super low-rise jeans, 3 ill-fitting bejeweled t-shirts and one pair of clear plastic platform hooker shoes from Rainbow for the cost of one pair of work appropriate pants.

4. You Refuse to Comment on Any Facebook Post That Contains the Word "Drama". Because really, just stop it. "Drama" is for children. And hood rats.

5. Applebee's is No Longer Your "Going Out" Spot. Because half price appetizers when you are paying $8 a pop for watered down drinks? Not as much of a bargain as you might want to believe. Also? That shit where they sing the saddest "Happy Birthday" to some middle-aged woman whose dumbass husband thought that Applebee's was the right choice. No. Never ever.

6. You Don't Show Up to House Parties Empty-Handed. This is perhaps a result of the change in expectations for what a "house party" is. Instead of expecting beer pong and Natty Ice, I now expect appetizers and Grey Goose. And you have to bring a fucking dessert or some shit when your hostess always provides Grey Goose.

7. You Don't Hesitate to Call Customer Service. Even when it's to complain that only one of the three-pack of vibrators you ordered showed up. What the hell is that, anyway? Don't advertise it as a three-pack and ship them all separately!

8. You Make Yourself Get Up and Go to Work Even When You Really, Really Don't Want to. Do you know how many days I think to myself "5 years ago I would have DEFINITELY called out today".

9. You Can afford to Buy the More Economical 12 Pack of Paper Towels, as opposed to buying them one roll at a time, because you currently have more than $9.47 in your checking account to survive on until your next paycheck.

10. You Don't Pay For Things in Change. Anymore.

11. You Own More Than One Laundry Cycle's Worth of Socks and Underwear, so you don't have to keep your old, holey emergency undies with the ripped elastic "just in case" you run out (and, for that matter, you don't have to keep those fucking awful, uncomfortable thongs you bought at the request of some jackass who wasn't going to have a string up his ass all day).

So I guess I'm there, then? A full-fledged grown-up and everything! Did I miss anything? How did you guys know you were officially a grown-up?


Helen said...

Sleep became more important than staying out late. A depressing realization.

Front Desk Ninja said...

Woahhhhhhh what the fuck, I fit into almost all of these definitions of a grown up, Jaclyn.

Fuck you for making me realise I'm more mature than I want to be at my baby age.

Heather Rose said...

You go to make some large purchase like a car or a freakin' house, and the real estate agent actually takes you seriously, because no bigz, I can just take on $400k worth of debt...

But I think I may have negated some of that adult-ness by having fro-yo for lunch the other day. It was yummy.

Jaclyn said...

@Helen- Yes! Sleep is my number one priority. It's pathetic.

@Ninja- You get all the "perks" of adulthood and you still have the quick hangover recovery time. Lucky bitch.

@Heather- before I decided to leave my husband we were looking for a house. We were both so shocked when the bank was like "oh yeah, you can totally buy a fucking house. We trust you guys". I think this needs to officially make the list. What the hell were they thinking?