There’s this funny thing about being an adult – sometimes I think all of us are faking it. We’re just biding our time, watering the plants, until the real grown-ups show up and take over. Real adults are the people who don’t forget appointments, who always floss, who file their taxes well in advance, and whose children always wear clean, matching clothing. They’re so perfect you’d hate them, except that you need to believe the real grown-ups exist. If they don’t, the world will surely fall apart at the seams. We can’t hold it together without them.
Occasionally I manage to convince myself that I am a real adult. I mean, look at me. I have two children. I have a husband and a mortgage and a car in the garage. I sometimes catch myself saying things like, “Two wrongs don’t make a right,” and, “If you’re bored, go clean your room.” I even have an accountant, for heaven’s sake. You have to be a grown-up to have an accountant, right?
Where’s the real adult in this picture?
But then, when I start to feel all adult and capable, the veneer cracks. Here are some of the things I’ve done recently that have reminded me that maybe I’m not so grown-up after all:
- I was on a panel, speaking about moms and blogs, and I showed up to the wrong restaurant. I eventually found the right one, but I was 20 minutes late.
- When my daughter found a Lite Brite at my in-laws, I pushed her out of the way because she was doing it wrong.
- I got in trouble with one of my son’s daycare providers because I put something away for him that he was supposed to put away for himself, thereby interfering with his establishing independence.
- I forgot about my son’s doctor’s appointment, and I would have missed it completely, except I picked up my phone to check Twitter and saw the reminder five minutes in advance. Luckily it all worked out, though, because while we were 15 minutes late the doctor was 20.
- I forget myself and swear in front of my kids on a not-infrequent basis.
- I sometimes ignore it when my kids are doing things they shouldn’t, because I’m too tired to deal with it.
- I often spoil my dinner by eating chocolate as I’m cooking it.
- I spend way too much time playing Angry Birds.
- I am an ace at garbage jenga. This is where I don’t feel like taking out the trash, so I stack it up, until my husband can’t take it anymore and does it himself.
- I buy my kids mostly toys that I like, so that I can play with them.
- I raid my kids’ piggy banks when I’m low on cash and the field trip money is due. I always mean to pay them back, but I generally forget.
- I constantly have something on my shirt. While I would blame this on my children, the truth is that it’s at least 50% me.
Do you feel like a real adult, or do you feel like you’re pretending? What things do you do that real adults don’t, and vice versa? I want to hear all about it!