Thursday, January 28, 2010

Growing Up

I wish I could remember the exact conversation that precipitated the thought, but I can tell you exactly where I was when I had it. James and I were driving from his place to our new house (I couldn't help it! I love saying it!) - and we were making arrangements for getting the mail forwarded or calling LIPA (our power company) or some other home-owner related task.

And I said something along the lines of, "I guess we finally have to grow up." He mumbled something like, "No, I think you can grow up..." to which I replied back that we needed two grown-up people in this marriage... And the conversation just got me thinking...

All this home-owner business - all this marriage business - it is the stuff of grown-ups. It's not like I feel like James and I aren't grown up. I'm 36, he is 41, we both have stable careers, pay our bills, having working cars, are not homeless...we aren't immature - we are responsible individuals. But I wonder if not being immature is the same thing as being grown up.

And, I guess that, at any point prior to this, we could still choose not to act like grown ups - and it wouldn't really affect anyone but ourselves.

Not anymore - it's different now. If I choose not to act grown up, it's not just me in my un-grown-up world. You can't live in an un-grown-up world and get to enjoy all the things that only come in a grown up world.

And even though I would say we act grown-up a majority of the time, I guess it is the idea that now we have to grow up. And as much as we maybe have resisted seeing ourselves in that demographic, we have, really and truly, entered the grown-up world.

I've been reflecting on how things will be different. I think the move and the house is what really spurred on this chain of thought...

I rent an apartment from my parents...I have for the past 5 years. Beside my years in college and despite my numerous, unsuccessful attempts to move out, I have lived at this address my whole life. As much as I have wanted my independence and freedom, I can't deny the convenience of just 'running upstairs' if I ran out of milk or just wanted to borrow an egg. Or, if I didn't feel like cooking. Or, if my car started making a weird noise. Or if I needed help hanging my black and white pictures.

That's gonna change. I won't be running to dad when I need something fixed and I won't be asking mom to cook for me when I'm too tired lazy to cook for myself. As much as it might not have always been the most 'mature' action, I could get away with it. No longer.

The house, the move, the marriage...I can't escape it. It is time to grow up.

So, all these things we could 'get away with', if we wanted to....not anymore.

It's exciting to me to think of having our own home and running a household and being in charge of my own little corner of real estate. But it is a little scary, too. I wonder if I am ready to be a 'real' grown-up. With a house. And a mortgage. With no escape clause if I don't like how it is working out (owning a home, I mean - although I don't believe in an escape clause from marriage either. But the home is what I was referring to).

Maybe it is the idea of commitment - commitment is very mature and adult. It is the essence of 'grown-up.' And I think that is good for us. It's not like we don't know about commitment or that we haven't thought about it or haven't commitment to anything before this...but I guess it is more tangible now. More permanent.

Buying a house is a very grown-up step. And so is getting married. I think we are ready for it. [I think.] I think it's time. And honestly, I think we need to do it. Being a 40-year-old 20-year-old is a little unbecoming.

So grown-up world, ready or not, here we come.


  1. yes, it is weird... the "growing up" thing... Sometimes I think about it too... When I hear a noise in the house I wish my dad was here! Isn't that funny? I mean... Hubby is protective and everything but I still feel like we are kids (LOL!!!) I've been thinking about it more since our daughter was born... she must look at us and think we are superheroes (hopefully she feels like that for a long time!) but we are just ... you know... Paloma and Josh! BUT WE ARE THE PARENTS NOW! HOLY COW!!! What a responsibility!!! Our parents were our superheroes (and now I am sure they felt like that too and even now they probably find it hard to believe they are grandparents... when in their hearts they are still KIDS!!!) -specially my dad! You should hear him! I doubt he will ever grow up! - Do not worry too much about "growing up" ... You don't really need to... (hee hee) enjoy your new life, learn from the new experiences you are about to live and take one step at a time... and if you can... read "The Little Prince" :)

    BTW: (I am glad you liked the verse!)


  2. I absolutely love this post! Love the thought and insight and the hint of emotion, too. I was over 40 before I felt grown-up. For me, it was the first time I needed to help my parents. That was it! Poof! In my 40's, four kids, three graduate degrees, one good marriage but then my parents needed me. Suddenly, I was grown up :)

  3. I've been married for almost 5 years and have a one year old daughter, and most days I still feel somehow like I'm playing house. =) I think the whole concept of growing up is a sort of fluid concept....hard to grasp. I love the instrospection of this post, though. It reminds me a lot of the things I was thinking on the eve of my own wedding. I think we all have to reconcile how young we feel with the "grownup" responsibilities and obligations we all of a sudden take on, and it's hard to see ourselves as one of the "adults" we've looked up to for so long.

    I feel like this is a very rambly comment, but that's just how I'm feeling today. Rambly. =)

    Terrific thoughts. I look forward to reading more of your thoughts as you get closer and closer to the big day!

    And BRAVO on the no escape clause to marriage thing.......BRAVO.

  4. Girl I think you will be just alright - it's just a little scary because everything is changing right now. Give it some time and you'll probably see that you enjoy this lifestyle more than the last. Now you can run to your husband instead of Daddy. Which will bring you two even closer together. You still don't have to "Grow Up" completly! Make sure to enjoy life. Chris and I go to an arcade EVERYTIME we go on Vacation, just the two of us. We get $20 in quarters (sometimes more) and we start playing the games together - We've even played a round of Laser tag in the past. There's nothing wrong with acting a bit childish as long as it's the right kind of childish! :) I think you're going to do great!!!

  5. I'm still waiting to feel "grown up". My current theory is that children will finally evoke that feeling. Most of it comes from comparing myself to where my mom was at my age (any given age). College, marriage, 6 kids, moving, going back to school, etc. I'm nowhere near my mom was at 30, so I don't feel like I.. measure up.

    Not that I'm a failure, but.. dude. My mom had 5 kids at my age and still added a 6th! I'm.. unemployed and blogging.

  6. Gotta love LIPA! lol anyway...being a homeowner definitely makes you feel grown up! Definitely a lot more responsibility...sometimes I curse being a homeowner...especially when the airconditoiner breaks during the hottest day of the summer...or your toilet leaks to your downstairs ceiling..things like that definitly makes you feel "grown up" Good luck!!