And Then It Hits You… You Need to be a Grown-up

A few weeks ago, my husband and I gave our kitchen a thorough cleaning. While we cleaned, our dinner was cooked by the crock-pot, which I love because it is the ultimate in domestic-multitasking. After about two hours of hard work, our kitchen was restored to practically new condition, which is saying a lot because our kitchen is over 180 years old.

Then the husband, the Pumpkin and I sat down to dinner and I had a nearly out-of-body experience.

The evolution has been happening, slowly. We’ve noticed the changes. For example, she has her own friends at church, friends that she’s made all by herself. Then, I’ve also noticed that she is getting more and more irritated when I won’t let her do things, odd tasks like dusting and folding laundry. Our little girl is growing up, which I am quite ok with since I am not kid-oriented anyway.

Still, when we sat down for dinner and had an actual conversation I was intellectually engaged in, it was surreal. I had this feeling as if the scene was impossible, because certainly, so much time hadn’t elapsed when I could be having an intellectual conversation with my daughter already. Certainly I am not that old.

I didn’t feel like an adult when I got married, or when I gave birth, or when we bought our house, all of which are grown-up things to do. Over the past decade or so, I’ve seen those around me age and I’ve felt like the center hub that doesn’t change despite the movement around it. The passage of time has been little more than calendar numbers changing. It doesn’t help that nearly all of my friends and immediate family don’t look any different then they did 10 years ago, sort of frozen at the year 2000.

However, as my relationship with my daughter changes, providing for her wellbeing and being responsible for her is no longer enough. She is going to need guidance from an adult. I keep waiting for an ah-ha moment but I think the problem, for me, is that I don’t feel any different. Despite all my responsibilities, I still feel like my old self, circa 1998. Logically, I know I am definitely an adult because I do adult things, but I don’t feel as mature, sophisticated or as wise as I imagine an adult should feel. Of course, it’s hard to see things introspectively. Maybe an out-of-body experience wouldn’t be such a bad idea.


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