10 days, 18 hours, and 35 minuets

is how long I have now been 21 years of age . In some ways it seems completely normal. Life hasn’t changed all that much, I didn’t wake up a completely different person on the 10th of January. It was just another day with the same amount of change as the one before it. But occasionally when I think “I’m 21”, my next thought is “Really? 21 years is a long time. 21 is supposedly adult”. I’m a TA for a college class, I grade papers, I pay rent and live in my own apartment. These seemed like scary concepts four years ago, but now they’re just a way of life. Ok so I’ve done these things for a while, but now there’s an officiality to it all. I can walk into a bar. There are very few things that I can’t do on my own now and that’s slightly disconcerting. I could go completely A-WOL and no one could stop me- I could rent a car, drive to North Dakota, leave my cell phone behind so no one could contact me, find a job, and completely start another life; is there Wells Fargo in North Dakota? I don’t particularly want to live in ND, and I’m pretty darn happy with the life I’m living now. But that is a perfectly viable alternative that I could choose.

That might sound strange, but I think about these things. I’ve always been hyper-aware of responsibility and repercussions. When I first started driving I would have to remind myself to relax and breathe regularly because I was so terrified of the horrible damage I could do with just one wrong movement of the steering wheel. I know others feel liberated by this, they feel a sense of exhilaration at the power they wield, and so I should add that I do. But still… It’s an adjustment. Not a life adjustment. Just a mentality adjustment. I’m sure I’ll look back in a year or two and wonder what the big deal was. But right now I’m just coming to terms with the realities of adulthood and exactly what I want to do with the opportunities it provides.

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