Do You Feel Any Older?

Well, no. Not really.

For some reason when you’re a kid, adults always ask you if you feel any older on your birthday, as if that magical day suddenly ages you, you shoot up three inches, and your voice slightly deepens. I have yet to hear anyone respond affirmatively.

I heard once that the only age one actually does feel older is the age of eighteen. This makes sense—there’s a transition from adolesence to adulthood, at least in the eyes of the government. Feelings of freedom and responsibility are associated with this age.

But I can say after living a month under the title of “young adult” that, no, I don’t feel any older. I’m still an awkward teenager, bumbling through life. Sure, I now go to college, and I’m (supposed to be) studying to get a degree to better myself, contribute to society, and live the life carbon-copied for me by good ol’ Uncle Sam, but I’m just not feeling it. Yes there’s more responsibility, and my signature can hold its own weight, rather than requiring an accompaniment by my “parent/guardian,” but there’s just nothing new.

And I’m not saying I’m disappointed, either. In fact, it’s almost a relief. I always dreaded the day when suddenly I’d be thrust into the world of the eighteen-and-up, like some sort of post-pubescent newborn, having not a clue on job attainment, bill paying, and general hard work. I suppose I have my upbringing to thank for my lack of culture shock. I don’t live with my parents anymore (and that is one change I can’t say I’m very fond of, but I suppose I’ll have to get used to it), but right up to the day I moved out I was given responsibility. I got a job, learned how to pay (some) bills, do laundry, cook, clean, look after little ones, mow the lawn, and ride a bike.

I suppose this lines up with one of my previous posts: I don’t think of my life as broken up into chapters, but rather one long novel. I’m just moving through, continuing on my way.

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