Just because I’m a parent doesn’t mean I’m an adult. Does it?
When I was a kid I thought that one day I’d wake up and I’d be Grown Up
. I’d suddenly know how to make casseroles, prune roses and sew pyjama pants from scratch. I’d have things like retirement annuities totally sussed and I’d be the proud owner of a pressure cooker, unchewed nails and a tight spiral perm.
Needless to say, that didn’t happen. Which makes me a bit sad. The perm bit aside, my impression of being Grown Up was a lovely one. A competent, efficient and knowledgeable one.
But instead of knowing how to man an overlocker, I am still technologically, directionally and a fair amount of the time, emotionally challenged. I have yet to roast a Christmas ham and I can’t find the time to pluck my eyebrows, never mind weed the garden.
I look with dismay through the list of ‘30 things to do before I turn 30’ scribbled in a journal by my highly optimistic/unrealistic 15-year-old self. It’s painfully obviously I won’t be winning Wimbledon or an Oscar before I turn 30. Or ever. And I’d better get my act together if I still want to star with John Travolta in a Grease remake in time.I’m married and a parent
yet I regularly feel like an impostor in a Grown Up world. I feel slightly guilty when I sneak time to paint my (chewed) nails, like someone might bust me for playing dress up when I should be mastering Pythagoras. So when will I start to feel Grown Up? And what does it actually mean to be Grown Up? Does it mean choosing tofu over topdeck? Or Opera over Oprah? Or maybe the true sign of Grown Up-ness is getting your Tax Return in on time? If that’s the case, then I’m doomed.
The way I see it, I’ve got two options: firstly I could put all my time and energy into evolving into the PGU (Perfect Grown Up) I had in mind when I was a child. Or secondly, I could put all my time and energy into being the best wife
, parent and grown up I can be, whilst remaining true to my clumsy, somewhat messy, slightly John Travolta-obsessed self. Sounds good. But what harm can it do to take up cooking, gardening, sewing, flower arranging, pottery, painting and bridge classes on the side?What does being a Grown Up mean to you?
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