Wednesday, September 26, 2012

What's the Big Idea?

It's odd that the bigger the idea I have, the more difficult it is to put into black and white. Well, considering the relative complexity of Big Ideas, maybe it's not so odd. It's difficult for me to share my deepest passions- what if other people think I'm silly? What if they just don't get it? What if I'm the only one who feels this way?

Speaking of being the odd one out, my latest passion- indeed, one of my new Big Ideas- could be something I simply missed out on. Perhaps I missed the memo, but I feel the cultural conversation surrounding the transition to adulthood is severely lacking in the Hard Stuff. Did everyone else get the message that major landmarks of adulthood (school, career, house, relationship) are not only optional, but also completely unassociated with any particular age? Where is the message that just because you graduate college doesn't mean you automatically get a full time job in the same field? Where is the message that changing your mind about the rest of your life- even several times- is ok?

Maybe I missed all this. But this is definitely a theme I'm going to continue examining. In my cross-country move and head-first dive into an adult relationship, financial independence (mostly), finding a job, searching for a career, and establishing my own life, I've been continuously struggling with the trappings of adulthood while still feeling like an adolescent. I haven't yet pinpointed what will make me feel like an adult. I do my best to look and act like one- being mistaken for a student is frustrating. I find myself often returning to financial security as the hallmark of adulthood, but I also think that's pretty messed up. Does a number, a bank account, or a type of bank account really define my maturity? It shouldn't. If someone else suggested that to me, I'd definitely counter the argument. But when my own head suggests it, arguing with myself just feels, well, crazy.

And so the process begins. What the hell is adulthood and how the hell do we talk about it together? Stay tuned.

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