When I was younger, a much more timid version of my current self began wondering what she’d be like when she emerged as an adult.
At the time, I thought that I’d be all grown up by seventeen, probably thanks to the teen magazine that bears the same name.
I thought (or perhaps hoped) that seventeen-year old me would be this popular, put-together young woman.
So when I arrived at seventeen, I was quite unprepared for the harsh realization that I was still awkward and acne-ridden.
I set my sights on the end of college.
The beginning of “adulthood” (whatever that means, anyway) brought about the same let down.
My seventeen-year self would not have been entirely disappointed, although she would may have laughed to think about how her perceptions of her older self were nothing at all like she’d thought.
And so again, I am realigning my vision of my future self.
By realigning, I mean throwing it out entirely.
I always thought that I’d know everything I needed to know about, well, everything by the time I graduated from college.
Again, a lie.
I know how to formulate thoughts, to structure ideas in constructive ways, but I don’t know everything.
In fact, I’m entirely convinced I know less now than I did before, as far as bookish knowledge goes.
It’s sort of disappointing, but at the same time, it’s a nice call to action as far as intellectual progress goes.
It’s brought about the reactivation of my interest in books. I am carrying with me a book about modern feminism to Chicago, hoping to find time (when not sleeping face-down on the airplane trays) to read it.
Even that first stressful post-collegiate year was a time of immense personal growth.
I’m a different person now than I was when I was handed that empty diploma case, or even than when it finally came in the mail.
I’m sturdier. I mean that mentally, but you know, I’m starting to wonder if this office job gig isn’t throwing a wrench in my metabolic prowess. Anyway, we’ll revisit that in five years when I’m either still slender or I’ve gained like 30 pounds.
I’m wise. (Wiser. Not wise yet, but probably a good deal wiser than before.)
Whatever. I’ve decided to relish my awkward 20s, that time of exploration and realization. Let them be wonderful.
I’m realizing that I’ll probably never be put-together. I live in chaos, I thrive in it. I’m taking baby steps to learn how to be more organized, but let’s face it: I’ll never be type A. I’ll never be nutty about the organization of my closet (once I learn to put my clothes in it); I’ll never be nervous about the way the dishes get stacked.
The other day, Mike and I were making dinner. I began cutting some French bread. “No!” He yelled, taking the knife out of my hand and demonstrating how to properly cut the bread. “What if some man is perfect, but he can’t get over the fact that you can’t cook and you’re not organized?”
I shrugged it off.
Any man who wants to be with me is going to have to deal with the fact that I can only make a few basic dishes and that I’m not a good organizer. It’s a process.
However, according to Mike, one thing I’m really good at is “scrubbing the bathroom.”
So that’s something, right?
I’m off to Chicago tonight, hoping that my flight isn’t delayed or cancelled due to weather. (Hail hit the airport really hard a couple of nights ago, and damaged a bunch of the planes.) I’d very much like to arrive on time, because I’ve got a busy weekend ahead.
There are seriously not enough hours in the day.
Enjoy your weekend!
I think the secret is knowing that no one is ever really "put together". Also, maybe the perfect man is one who does the cooking and organizing. 😉