Sunday, February 6, 2011

Growing Up

When do you become an Adult?  I first thought that it was when I turned 18, but I definitely wasn't an adult when I was 18.  I thought that when I graduated college and got married, that then I was an adult.  But soon after that I found out that I still wasn't an adult, and true adulthood comes with kids.  Now, we are pregnant and trying to buy a house.  It would appear that I am on the eve of adulthood.  This seems ridiculous to me.  I spent my entire adolescence wishing I was a "grown up" so that I could eat what I want, do what I want, and say what I want.  Now that I am an adult, I sort of wish I wasn't.

First of all, the responsibility we crave when we are teenagers sucks when you're outside of your parent's safety fence.  Paying bills sucks, going to work sucks, and cleaning the house sucks.  Secondly, I can't do all the things I wanted to when I was a child.  If I eat whatever I want, I will become 500 lbs. in little over two weeks.  If I do what I want, I will end up in jail or with no friends.  This is because you realize that as an adult, people suck.  This is mainly due to the fallenness of creation.  I wish I could say I desire to be a redemptive force in the this world, but really I just want to yell at everyone for being so incredibly stupid.

Finally, becoming an adult makes you feel old.  Here on the eve of adulthood, I have strong memories of myself reaching up to my mother and asking to be held.  I remember being terrified of clowns (which some of you never grew out of).  I remember getting my first car, then my first speeding ticket, then having my first reck.  I remember graduating and going to college.  All of this feels like it just happened, and it did just happen.

I am only 25, but I feel old.  I know some of you who are in your 30s, 40s, 50s, or 60s (if you are in your 70s, kudos for knowing how to use a computer) will say that I'm still very young, but you're just too old and senile to remember how old you felt when you were 25.  I remember my family getting our first computer in 1992.  Now, my 7 year old niece has her own laptop.  1st graders are walking around texting on their cell phones.  I didn't have my own computer until I left for college.  My first cell phone was given to me when I turned 16, and I didn't text on the thing until I met Sarah.  All of this makes me feel old because I don't understand why any of these kids need this stuff.  I didn't need this crap as a kid. As of right now, (and this may change as I am still not an adult) my kids wont get this crap until they actually need it.

And yet, I still feel young sometimes.  This usually happens when someone five years older than me starts to give me advice on life or wants to be my mentor.  I don't want to hear a 30 year old tell me how to be a successful human, as they probably have no idea what they are actually doing.  I find myself wanting to actually hear what my parents have to say on matters.  I especially want to hear what my grandma thinks about things.  When I was a kid, I would have never listened to an "old" about life.  But now, on the eve of adulthood, I realize that I know so very little about being an adult.  That ignorance is youth, but it withers quickly as the experience of adulthood forces itself into your life.

Growing up sounds so exciting as a child.  It is exciting, but it is also extremely scary.  Sarah and I, barring any unforeseen disaster or sickness, still have many, many years left to live.  There is so much we can do with our lives.  The fear is that when we are 50 we will look back and wonder how we got there so quickly.  It will happen quickly.  We will all grow old fast, so we must live.  We don't have to fill our lives with a bunch of stuff to keep us busy, but choose a few things that are important.  We must be the very best parents that we can possibly be.  We must be the best Christians we can possibly be.  And we must rely on God to fill in the gaps between our abilities.

So while we feel old now, life is just around the corner.  This is not some cheesy heaven metaphor, its about our soon to be born twins.  They will be our reason for living for the next few decades.  They will rule our lives, and I cannot be more happy about that.  The joy I feel for them overrides the old that is quickly creeping inside of me.  So, not all that comes with being an adult is bad.  As it turns out, the prospect of youth is what keeps us young at heart.

-Jeremy

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