This summer has been particularly hard for me. I don’t know if it’s because the past two summers have been ones for the books, or because I expected too much from this summer…but it’s just been a huge disappointment. It’s mainly because this is the first summer I’ve had to be an adult.
The other night I got really angry. For what reason? None, I guess, other than the fact that I’ve come to hate almost every second of this summer and my hormones are out of whack because of my new IUD. This summer has flown by — and not in a good way. I’ve been so busy with life that I haven’t had a chance to do any of the things I wanted to do, like finish a book or work on Christmas presents. Instead, I’ve been wrapped up in work, school, finances, bills, and other, sour, life problems.
I’ve struggled with my mental health…a lot. I’m still recovering from all the issues I had over spring semester. I’m burnt out.
Basically, it’s not been anyone’s idea of “summer fun.” As I was writing about this in my journal, I began to do more thinking about this “adult” thing that is looming over me. How scary it is and how unexpected it has been. How unready I was, but yet how ready I should have been.
The world is weird. Up until we’re 18, we have to get permission to go to the restroom, but as soon as we’re let loose into college, we’re suddenly shoved all of these adult responsibilities on a rusty platter that we weren’t expecting.
I feel like, for most of my teen years, my parents were warning me about the adult world. They would mention every now and then about how hard it is and whatnot, but I always shrugged it off, thinking, “that’s not for me to worry about right now.”
But now it’s my time to worry, and I wasn’t ready. I don’t know if my parents think they did a good job at warning me. I suppose they did, but I feel so overwhelmed; I went from being coddled to having to worry about adult things like health insurance, tuition — well, money.
And when I try to talk with my family, the response I receive is usually along the lines of “well, that’s life,” or “this is what it’s like being an adult.” And it’s so disheartening. They don’t offer me advice or try to understand where I’m coming from — they just tell me to suck it up.
But I live in this reality where I’m surrounded by so many responsibilities: educational responsibilities, financial responsibilities, future responsibilities, personal responsibilities. And all my life I’ve been told to focus on myself and school, but now I’m getting the message that money comes before any of that.
I don’t know if it’s a different time from when my parents were my age (the 80s), but it feels like they’ve forgotten what it’s like to be 20. To be so lost and confused about your direction in life but having to make all of these important decisions that seriously impact you.
All I know is this: I’m confused. I’m lost. I don’t know what I want anymore. I’m expected to know what I want and drive down that road, full-force, without looking back. I’m receiving mixed signals when my whole brain is a mixed signal. But I’m not given time to think about it anymore; according to society, I’m supposed to know by now. I have other things to worry about.
I guess this is just being an adult, but it’s made my excitement for life fade.
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