Thursday, April 23, 2009

How Old am I?

Remember those girls in college who already seemed too old to be there? I'm not talking about the adult-ed students, either. There were two groups of them... the ones who dressed business casual all the time, who did internships at places like Ernst and Young, who were already plotting how they would be CEO of a major corporation by the time they were 35. Then there were the ones who already dressed like middle-aged soccer moms, who talked constantly about the weddings they'd been planning since they were 9 and what they would name their children (even if they didn't even have a boyfriend at the time). I was not one of those girls. I always felt like I wasn't old enough to be in college yet, even though I started taking college classes my senior year of high school.

And now..... I'm 30. I am married and have two kids and a mortgage and a full-time professional-type job. But I still feel like I'm not really old enough for any of those things. It's certainly not that I feel that I can't handle the responsibility. I got my first 'real' job when I was 14 (a real job being one where you work and receive a paycheck with a paystub that shows what taxes were taken out) By the time I was a junior in high school I was working almost 30 hours a week running the office of a local insurance agent who was just starting out (but still far more interested in playing golf than meeting with his clients). I opened the office most mornings, met with the clients, reviewed their policies, got them to sign all the necessary paperwork, collected, deposited, and reported payments, and, in general, kept the office going since he could usually only be bothered to be in the office for about 12 hours a week. By my senior year of high school I was taking high school classes in the morning, college classes in the afternoon, and working two jobs in-between. I continued to work two jobs through most of college and for some time after I graduated/got married. I have left only one job where I wasn't told that they would be glad to have me back if I were ever interested in returning ( and the one job doesn't count because my manager was a total jerk and couldn't stand that I wouldn't kiss up to him and make him feel important). I don't have issues with responsibility.

So... why do I feel this way? Why do I feel like I'm still 22? It's not that I want to come off as really young or do something youthful and impulsive. Maybe I shouldn't worry about it, but sometimes.... I really feel like I'm just playing grown up until I actually grow up. I kind of have this feeling like out of the blue someone is going to accuse me of being not grown up enough to have my life.

I just really thought that at 30 I'd feel like more of an adult.

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