Here we are, two days before Christmas, and my December Diaries project is basically down the toilet. I just haven’t cared much, but maybe this post will help.
I have been in Washington for eight years now (is that right? I think so) and it will be my seventh Holiday season without my family. The first year I was here, I made the five hour trek to North Idaho to visit my grandparents and extended family, a tradition I grew up with and needed badly that year. It has never really bothered me that I’ve been out here on my own, and so when people ask if I am ‘going home’ for the holidays, I am always surprised. I am home, I have lived here all of my adult life (the adult part is up for debate, I’ll get to that later). It’s true that my family lives elsewhere, but I knew when I moved here that I was on my own, and trips to Tennessee during the holidays are just not in the cards. In fact, I am lucky if I make it back once in three years, but that has more to do with how that state makes me feel and less about scheduling.
Since starting down this road, I have never been sure of it. I have never been able to see when the road will veer suddenly to the left, or the hill that I am climbing will drop out beneath me and send my heart into my throat. I am a terrible control freak, so you can imagine what this has done to my confidence: shattered it and rebuilt it time and time again. The most important thing I have learned in the past few years is that not being able to control everything is extremely liberating, and in terms of my personal life, I need to let things be what they are. I’ve recently discovered that I am becoming a bit like my father (well, him ten years ago), which isn’t a bad thing in and of itself, but it means I need to relax more. This weird road that I started down eight years ago isn’t nearly as intimidating as it used to be, and I am hoping that means I have finally ‘arrived’ or am at least on the outskirts of Adulthood.
I turned twenty nine a few weeks ago, and I’ve been sort of obsessed with one thing: When does one start feeling like an adult? I’ve asked friends of mine who are older, and friends who are younger and they all just kind of laugh at me, but I am totally serious. In terms of age, I do not look twenty nine at all, and I definitely don’t act like it. I will be the first to admit I am pretty immature: I am totally in love with dinosaurs, coffee makes me hyper, I still play World of Warcraft, and I actually got pissed when a friend of mine stole a slap bracelet from me during a white elephant gift exchange. To be fair to myself, that bracelet was also a watch, but that doesn’t change the fact that I wanted to hit him for taking it. I sing silly songs, I say ‘Fuck’ a lot (or some variation of it), and I found myself skipping to pick up my coffee at the counter the other day. In public. It was only a few skips, but…what? I just do not feel like an adult, and I feel like I should at this point. As I explained all of this to a good friend two days before my birthday, she just looked at me and said “You are who you are. If you want to skip, you will, and there is nothing wrong with it”. I suppose the part that matters is that I am not an asshole and I pay my bills on time? Like I said, ‘outskirts’ of Adulthood, I don’t think I’ve made it to town yet.
There has been no purpose to this entry.
If you’re still reading, I want to thank you. Maybe not ‘you’, but if you’re a friend or some variation of it, then I mean You. I have a deep appreciation for each one of you, because you deal with each new and ridiculous thing that comes out of my mouth and don’t make me feel too weird for it. You don’t care that I just got around to watching Die Hard, or that I was obsessed with Dave Matthews for ten too many years. You each push me in your own way, to be kinder, or not too soft, to learn and appreciate new things, or to just loosen up and enjoy myself. This has been one amazing year for me, so thanks for sticking around and being a part of it.