Time Marches On: Signs That I’m Turning into an Adult

There are certain moments that pop up every now and then during which I realize, “huh, I think this is a sign that I am no longer a kid.” These are rather unsettling, however, because in my head I’m still a teenager. I try to avoid thinking about the whole “you’re an adult and you’ve got responsibilities like knowing how to change batteries in a smoke detector, and starting a 401k, and getting your own health insurance.”

Anyway, no matter how hard I try to avoid thinking about the fact that teenagers think I’m old enough to now be addressed as “ma’am,” I can’t go a few days without being reminded of my entrance into adulthood.

Here are some of my more recent “I’m not a kid anymore” observations.

  • My mom has a long-standing love of white dinnerware. I recently spent a solid 15 minutes perusing the white dinnerware aisle at Target BY MYSELF before selecting a few items of my own. Yep, I’m turning into my mother.
  • I have to Google acronyms I see online. IIRC? What in the world does that mean?
  • I witnessed people doing some dance called “the Wobble” for the first time ever at a wedding this summer. It confused me.
  • College freshmen look like babies to me.
  • It seems absurd to let a 16-year-old have a driver’s license.
  • I don’t understand how Disney Channel shows are even popular. Back in my day, they were way better than the cheesy crap that is shown now.
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I’m a Walking Stereotype

I’m in my mid-20s, I have two advanced degrees, I am not employed, and… I live at home with my parents.

I’m basically the stereotypical millennial. Except I dislike selfies.

Okay, so let’s get this straight: I’m living at home TEMPORARILY. For the summer. For three months.

My year-long legal fellowship doesn’t begin for another couple of weeks because I had to take the bar exam first.

The funny part about the whole “I’m living at home” thing is that I’ve already signed a lease for an apartment that begins in mid-August. The apartment in a new complex that’s still under construction. That’s right, I signed a contract to live in a place that I’ve never actually seen and doesn’t technically exist yet. But on the plus side, no one will have ever used my kitchen or bathroom until I step foot in the place. Priorities, people.

So, what does all this mean?

It means I was studying for the life-changing, insanity-inducing, beast-of-a-test known as “the bar exam” AT HOME. I was staying up until odd hours of the night and slaving away at the same desk I sat at almost a decade ago when I was in high school. The same desk where I did my calculus homework, typed up my college applications, and did research on shark dissection¬†(shoutout to my Advanced Biology class from 9th Grade; yeah, I took that class back when I thought I wanted to be a doctor. That plan fell through rather quickly. Do you know how disgusting dissection is? It didn’t help that my lab partner thought it would be a grand idea to dissect the tiny shark’s brain).

It was weird.

“Your room looks like what it used to in high school,” my mom complained one day. “It’s a mess.”

My childhood bedroom is sort of in limbo, just like me. Some elements of my childhood remain, while others have been discarded over the years.

It’s got remnants of being a kid: all my furniture is the same, my old dead PC that was fried due to a power surge is collecting dust on my desk, and my favorite childhood books are stacked on a shelf in my closet. There are dozens of VHS TAPES (you read that right) filled with recorded episodes of “8 Simple Rules” in there somewhere too. It’s like a graveyard of my youth.

But then a lot of stuff has disappeared, now that I think about it. The poster of singer Michelle Branch is gone, as are the stupid frilly pink curtains. The bulletin board littered with movie stubs, ads ripped from magazines, and photos of people I’m not even friends with anymore has been replaced. The dinosaur-like non-flatscreen TV is long-gone. Instead of math and science textbooks, my floor is covered with textbooks from law school and outlines from my Evidence and Torts classes. The walls are now painted a faint green instead of baby pink.

Nothing screams “adulthood” more than neutral-colored walls with minimal wall decorations. Slowly but surely, I’m headed into adulthood – and so is my room.

I Miss My Youth

I miss being a kid. My only responsibilities were running around and laughing a lot. And someone else was in charge of my hair. -Anonymous

Also, it was perfectly acceptable to scribble all over yourself with gel pens and fall asleep at 8 p.m. without any judgement. Adulthood is hard.

How I Learned to Love Puppies

ALERT. Today is National Puppy Day. This can only mean two things: 1) story time, and 2) puppy videos.

When I was 3-years-old, a crazily-enormous dog chased me through an orange orchard. You read that right, WordPress friends. I was minding my own business on my great-uncle’s farm, and this beast came out of nowhere. I don’t even know how I escaped. What I do know is that it scarred me for (10 years of my) life.

For the next decade, I fled from any dog I encountered. It didn’t help that I was once also chased by a rather territorial Rottweiler when I was in elementary school. I was just going on a walk with my mom and brother through my neighborhood, and this dog jumped over its fence and darted after us. I ran the entire way home. Once again, I have no idea how I escaped. What I do know is that I avoided that side of the neighborhood the same way that most kids avoided Boo Radley’s house in To Kill a Mockingbird.

I finally overcame my fear after hearing my mom tell lots of stories about the American Eskimo dog she had growing up (the dog went by the rather cliche name Lassie). After years of hearing these stories, I decided dogs could a) be sweet, b) be intelligent, c) be worthy of my love.

After much convincing, my parents agreed to let me get a puppy. More than 10 years later, people still mistake my dog for a puppy – not only because of his size, but also because of his playful personality. He’s the best dog in the entire world. He thinks he’s a human, he has a security blanket (a squeaky toy frog), and he enjoys drinking spilt frappuchinos, omelets, and cornflakes. He’s a weirdo, and I love him.

As promised, here is a video of puppies (Maltese puppies to be specific) being adorable little fluffballs.