The Between-ness of Growing Up

There is a common misconception of growing up, that once you reach adulthood you are at a definite location in your life. As a teenager you think that being an adult means you have things figured out. You have a working definition of who you are. Your life makes sense, and you have “it all” figured out. 
In my experience as an “adult”, I have found that it is more of a general “in between-ness” rather than a definite place. You don’t really have anything figured out, much less “it all”, and rather than a definition of who you are, you are a continuous work-in-progress. Being an adult is less about knowing where  you are, and more about knowing where you have been and where you want to be. You end up in the middle. Stuck, right there, in between everything. 

Here are a few examples of “adulthood”

1. Wanting to go out drinking with friends but not wanting the three-day-you-aren’t-nineteen-anymore hangover.

2. Wanting to be done University but not really wanting to join the real world.

3. Wanting to save for a house but wanting to go on that awesome vacation

4. Disneyland or Tropical Beach?

5. Wanting to save for retirement but wanting to spend money doing fun things- right now.

6. Wanting to have kids and not wanting to give up Saturday sleep-ins and spontaneous sex

7. Planning a spa weekend or planning a wedding?

8. Wanting your kids to need you and cuddle you forever but wanting them to grow up and do things for themselves.

9. Wanting a “real job” but not wanting more responsibilities

10. Waking up wondering how you ended up in this nightmare but never wanting this wonderful dream to end.

So, adulthood is not so much an endpoint, as a constant starting point. You keep starting over in the middle of something new. It stays that way, I assume, until you enter old age (I’ll let you know when I get there) –Stuck right in the middle of all your plans and “reality”. Whatever that means.


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