BY KIMBERLY JAHNS
What is the job description for “adult?” Maybe if I receive my college diploma or start my 401k I get the “adult” status. But another part of me wonders if I even want to be considered an adult just yet.
I have seen many middle-aged people have the maturity level of a high school boy, yet they are still classified as adults. So maybe it’s education level that is the trigger for adulthood. After a GED or Bachelor’s degree, I too can be an adult. But then, there are many people who have little to no education and have changed the world, and I would think that many would consider them adults.
My basic definition of adulthood is that your responsibility-to-fun ratio is the complete opposite of when you were a child. When we were children, we were able to eat dirt, cry about stolen toys and hated taking naps in the afternoon. Now we worry about our future financial stability, cry about our current debt and would eat a shoe in order to take a justified nap in the afternoon.
Inevitably, we all have to grow up in one way or another to be responsible and live a somewhat comfortable life. I would love to be able to play with Legos for three hours, but the adult part of me knows that would be a foolish waste of time. Instead I need to look up current events and political subjects because I guess that is where I am supposed to be in my life.
But where am I actually in my life? Watching “Boy Meets World” while I eat Gummy Bears for dinner. It’s not that I don’t want to grow up but rather that I have my entire life to worry about my 401k or paying off loans or dealing with random adults issues. In certain circumstances I do put on my “big girl” pants and do adult activities in order to have some semblance of a future, but I also enjoy sledding down hills on sheet pans and staying up until 2:00 a.m watching TV just because I can.
Being an adult is more of a state of mind than any caliber of maturity or intelligence. Yes, these characteristics may help you in your journey to adulthood, but being an adult takes more than these attributes. I am an adult if I say I am an adult. Today, I am eating chocolate and pudding for dinner. Today, I am a child.