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Isn't it pretty?

Monday, September 05, 2005

Being a Grown-Up

Yesterday, I decided it was time to get my hair cut. I didn't realize what a challenge that would be on the Sunday of Labor Day weekend. I finally found one place that was open and willing to cut my hair without an appointment. As I sat down in the chair for the woman to cut my hair, the first words out of her mouth were, "So are you in high school?" I was taken aback for a moment; high school is a distant, ten-year old memory for me. I explained to her that no, I was actually about to start graduate school, and that I also work full-time. She was impressed by this and proceeded to tell me her life story about the hippie days and drugs and her manic-depression. All while managing to give my hair a beautiful cut and style. One of her last comments to me was, "Meet a guy, but don't get married too young." I know I look young for my age, but I don't usually get confused for someone in high school. I get carded when buying alcohol on occasion, but I usually feel it is because of those signs that say, "We card everyone." It was funny to hear this lately, because I have been thinking a lot about the line of demarcation between being a grown-up and not being a grown-up. (I am not sure what the right word is for not being a grown-up, "kid" doesn't quite work.) I find that I don't really consider myself a grown-up. Which is funny, considering that I am ridiculously responsible - I work full-time, completely support myself, pay all my bills, and go to school on top of it all. But there is some quality of grown-up-ness that I just don't feel I embrace, not do I really want to yet. I have been trying to figure out what the elusive quality is that constitutes grown-up-ness. I am positive it isn't about age, because I definitely know people who are younger than me who seem to be more grown-up than I am. I am trying to decide if it has to do with being married and having kids - but I know some single people who seem like grown-ups. So that idea doesn't work very well. So I can't figure out what makes one person a grown-up and another person a non-grown-up. Maybe it is a mixture of age, responsibility, having a family, etc. Maybe it is a state of mind, which I don't currently possess. But if it is, when does it switch? And why? I don't know, right now, I am happy being a non-grown up. Maybe soon, I will decide to change...but I doubt it.

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