So I’m now married, have my own house and basically living life as an “adult”. Perhaps soon enough, I may even have a human person who looks up to me as “mummy”. (No bun in the oven yet, I’m just saying.)
Some time ago, a young colleague who was helping us out temporarily before going back to school laments that she cannot imagine how she can cope when she gets to where I am. To her 22-year-old mind, the thought of being married and living independently, away from her family just sound too incredulous. How do you “learn” how to be an adult, she wonders.
The truth is, I told her, you’ll never feel prepared enough for adulthood. At least, that’s what I feel. Even at this point, I often feel like a 17-year-old trapped in a 29-year-old body. It’s still a surreal feeling to me that I have to deal with “adult” stuff like paying utilities bills, for my house, and having a husband (and not just a boyfriend).
I remember going through another “adolescence” stage when I was 19, just as I was going from teen hood to adulthood, and also going from a relatively disciplined junior college educational system to a more flexible one in university. I struggled quite a bit, and felt very lost because I didn’t know what I was supposed to do with my life. It felt like I was thrown into the ocean without any life jackets and asked to just swim hard.
Now, at 29, it felt like this once again. Before I know it, I’ve already been through almost a decade of “adulthood” yet I still feel like a clueless teenager, albeit one with more life stories to tell, been to more places, have more money, and feel more confident giving presentations before CEOs.
Nonetheless, I’m sure I’ll pull it through, just like I did when I was 19. While I may not feel it, I’m sure the wisdom that comes with age will help. What’s more, at least I now have a husband to cry to, and my own house to cry in.
Cheers to all teenagers trapped in adult bodies – you’re not alone.