I recently was talking to a few coworkers about very adult things and it dawned on me that adulting can be fun (when you are old enough to drink legally or have enough money to buy a car) but it can also be really hard, especially when you have to do things like budget your money, pay bills, and file taxes. I can imagine that we all had the thought at one point or another in our lives that was probably something along the lines of "....I can't wait to grow up so that I can make my own rules...". Well now that we are all adults we are probably like "...man I wish I was a kid again so someone else can take care of me...". With all this being said...here is a list of the 10 things that I think show what "adulting" really is.
1. Adulting is like a box of chocolates
Just when you think you've got this "being an adult" thing down, you usually get thrown a curve-ball. Pay all your bills? You get hit with having to replace the break system in your car. Bought all your groceries for the week? You end up not being home enough to eat them. Take your dog to play at the park? He gets bit by something and has to go to the vet. Adulting makes you think you're accomplishing something great, but then usually makes you question life in general.
2. Its all fun and games until...
Adulting is great and can even be fun at times. You can go to concerts with your friends without having to ask your parents first. You can get a dog. You can buy a car. You can eat out whenever you want. You can go on vacation. Its all pretty great until you start getting bills in the mail for rent, car insurance, electricity, etc. and then you start to wonder why you did not move home after college. Is "making my own rules" worth having to pay all of these bills each month? There are people I know who literally have a plan to move home after college and call their parents their roommates...because adulting sounds too terrible for them.
3. I'm just a bill...(sitting on capitol hill)
Anyone remember that song from school? Bills are just...whats the word...terrible. You may feel great after you pay your bills for the month and realize that you still have enough money to buy some beer. But then you remember that you will have to do the same thing next month and its honestly exhausting. I look at how much I pay in rent each month and think about all the money I would still have if I still lived at home. It really makes me contemplate packing up and moving home....and then I think mmmmm better not. Sometimes I see that show on HGTV about tiny houses and not having many bills and then I question life a little more...like maybe I should do that???
4. Hosting Family Events
A true test of just how hard you are adulting is hosting family events. As if family events weren't stressful enough, even just being a guest, now you get thrown into the pot of hosting Thanksgivings and Christmases because you are an adult. Your family has probably been waiting for this day because they've been going to the same few family places for the last 25 years. Now they can explore a new get together spot until the next family member is adulting enough to host a holiday!
5. Food - Buying and Eating It
I don't know about you, but grocery shopping is one of the things that stresses me out the most. I get so overwhelmed because I try to be healthy and meal plan, but my brain just must not work that way because I always end up buying too much or too little, and then I either run out of food too quickly, or I have to throw it away because it goes bad. I definitely took my parents grocery shopping and cooking dinner for granted because this is honestly a hard thing to do on a consistent basis.
6. Being Responsible
Adulting requires you to be responsible for yourself. Think back to those things you remember as a kid just always being there like extra trash bags under the sink, or new shampoo bottles in the shower. Well now you have to make the effort to go buy those things for yourself because you are an adult and that is the kind of thing adults do. Run out of laundry detergent? Well you better run to the store and get some! And while you're there, you should pick up some light bulbs to put in the lamps that don't work anymore because the bulbs burnt out. Adulting really is an effort that you have to make every day.
7. Work Work Work Work Work
My mom let us stay home from school sometimes because we needed a "mental health" day. Just a day to take a break from the life you knew as a kid to hang around and do nothing. Adulting doesn't usually allow for those days. You've got to work to pay the bills that we talked about earlier (even though we've probably all agreed that bills suck). Maybe you've got a few paid hours off? Which is nice...if you have them. But if you work a job that doesn't give you that luxury, then sometimes you have to ask yourself just how sick you are...or what can you give up that week so that you can not get paid for this work day. I think I snapchat my friend at least two to three times a week telling her that I do not want to go to work that day. But hey...we gotta do what we gotta do.
8. Drinking Is Not The Same
Do I even need to explain this one? I had an 8:00 am class every Monday, Wednesday and Friday when I was a freshman in college. My roommate and I used to go out every Thursday night for "college night" and sometimes wouldn't get back until 3 or 4 in the morning. And we NEVER missed that 8 am class. I have like two beers now and have a headache for the entire next day and if I have three beers you might as well count me out entirely. I just wonder how I ever drank and still made it to all my classes and played a collegiate sport??? Going out occasionally can still be fun, but usually the hangover the next day outweighs the desire to drink more than one.
9. Having To Dress Yourself Appropriately
It is totally acceptable to live in shorts, a sports bra, and a t-shirt with your hair in a bun for seven out of seven days a week when you are in college. This doesn't fly when you are an adult. People actually stare at you if they know you are adulting and you are out in public like that. They are hardcore judging your life in that moment. Depending on your job, you probably have to look presentable every day of the week, so the workout clothes faze is forced to be over. This one isn't so bad though....I actually enjoy that I have expanded my wardrobe to more than workout attire.
10. Whats Next?
This starts to happen when you start high school but it literally doesn't stop after that. People will just constantly ask you what your next move in life is. Its all like "oh hi nice to meet you, what do you do?" yada yada yada and it usually ends with "so what do you want to do next?". This could be a variety of things whether you are going to grad school or have a job straight out of college. People just always like to know what your next move is and this always makes me think that what I am doing currently isn't "adult" enough if other adults are asking me what I am going to do next with my life. Are they going to judge me if I say that I don't know what I want to go back to school for and I am actually trying to make a career out of the job I have now? Who knows. Regardless, when you are an adult, you always have to know the answer to this question.
Don't get me wrong, adulting can be a lot of fun. I have not lived at home for almost seven years now (three and a half of those being in college), but I don't think I would trade that freedom in. Having my parents as "roommates" would be great in a bill paying, saving money kind of way, but I think they would get sick of me just as much as I would get sick of them. Adulting can be a difficult boat to sail, but would you honestly want to be a kid again? Because I sure wouldn't.