With all of the holiday craziness, it feels like it has been forever since I have written anything. We had weeks of sickness in our home, followed by a steady stream of Christmas related stuff: concerts, tree trimming, family gatherings, the $700 bills for busted truck brakes 3 days before Christmas and all those bits. And really, I think I had little to write about that would be interesting to more than 5 people. (That said, this post will be exciting for approximately 7 people, so the bar is pretty low).
This year we had the pleasure of doing Christmas Day all on our own. We had spent the previous weekends and the days leading up to the big day spending time with family and friends, but I was really looking forward to spending our first holiday as a family of 5 together without having to trek to others’ homes to share holiday time.
Having this day to ourselves created a much different feeling than the holidays of yesteryear. After the morning of watching the kids go to town 9on their gifts, we all stayed in our new Christmas PJs longer than we would have, we got to muck about with the new toys as we casually prepped our Christmas dinner. And Mama got to have a drink or four- don’t judge.
Maybe it was the easy vibe, the many drinks or the unflattering amount of holiday cheesecake I had just eaten, but last night I had an epiphany.
Backing up – we rent our Christmas tree, alive in a pot, from the nursery down the street. We pick out our tree in October and they drop it off and pick it up. After dinner I had a moment of panic, I couldn’t remember when they were picking up the tree. I worried it was going to be picked up on Boxing Day, which meant stripping down the tree at the end of a very long day and packing away all the tree bits amongst the chaos that the morning gift opening had brought.
After the kids were in bed, as I walked to the car- where the receipt with pick up dates sat snuggly in my glove compartment – I had the epiphany: Shit, I am a grown up.
All of a sudden I was conscious of the fact, “I AM A GROWN UP! Shit, this is going to be a lot of work.”
Luckily, the tree wasn’t going to be picked up for another couple of days. If the tree needed to be returned, on top of this new awareness of my grown-up status, I think my head would have exploded in that moment.
One could question why I had this adulthood awakening at that moment, not during my wedding, or when we bought our latest home, adopted and/or birthed our children, or went to work everyday with real life grown ups. I have always just felt like we were playing house, going through the motions of doing the appropriately adult activities, but feeling a little like a fraud waiting to be found out. Waiting for someone to say, “Hold on a sec, she isn’t allowed these things, she isn’t old enough.” I had often wondered when I would feel as grown up as I had always perceived real grown ups, like my parents and teachers, to be.
I have to say, after being confronted with the knowledge of my new found role in life, I woke up this morning feeling the same as before. There was no sense of grandiose or anything like that. I was worried I would all of a sudden be aware of the gravity of the responsibilities. But no, I am not that bright or self-aware…in fact, I had cheesecake for breakfast, so my grown-upness is about as evolved as your average frat boy’s.
I am not sure when the rest of the general population comes to this realization. Maybe years before me, maybe years after, maybe never, I have no idea. But I would say being a grown up feels exactly like how I have felt for the last decade. Go figure.