It is difficult to stop myself from beginning this post with an apology and an explanation for my absence. I can’t really, fully apologize for not writing on here for THREE MONTHS, since the reason I started this blog was because I hate writing in my journal; I prefer typing, which doesn’t seem as beautifully antiquated as journaling is, but it is the truth. This blog is my diary, my professional diary! I shouldn’t punish myself or feel bad for not writing too often. Although it is healthy to journal daily (which I do, sigh – I write a couple of sentences everyday in my quintessential black Moleskine journal that I carry around everywhere), I like to write quality entires, and I haven’t had the motivation or the creative fuel to do that lately, since I am channeling most of that drive into my papers for school and my pieces for Rookie. Nevertheless, spring break is in less than a week, and I am able to effectively distribute my creative fuel.
The dawn of adulthood is scary, and it is even scarier at the age of eighteen because I am at the weirdest stage. Like, I am an adult, but I am also not an adult. I’ve been struggling trying to figure out how to effectively transition and how to handle feeling out of place in the world, but I recently realized that there’s no perfect way to transition into adulthood, and that this odd stage is the best time to make the decision of accepting adulthood (you know, the other factors of adulthood besides maturity. I am talking paying bills, making good/bad decisions, doing LIFE things) or continuing to be a teenager and living in the mindset of a teenager. I have chosen the former, mainly because it’s what I have been waiting for my entire life as an only child. My desire to be independent has finally been given purpose.
With this choice, I have had to do a couple of things that feel “out of character” and “risky.” In reality, I am just doing the adult thing. After saying YES to the boy that asked me to be his girlfriend, I had a long Facebook Messenger conversation with my mother who initially REFUSED to hear anything about a boyfriend. She began with the expected – “You’re going to lose focus of your education!” “You aren’t old enough to have a relationship!”- and transitioned into “I didn’t send you to college to have a boyfriend, I sent you for your education.” It was frustrating hearing this from her, as frustrating it was to empathize with the fact that not only is my mother is a part of a different generation, but that she holds the “NO DATING!!!” Indian norm close to her heart (although this is slowly being defied by today’s youth). I proceeded to tell my mother that I valued my education more than anything (proof: my excellent grades and the various extracurricular activities that I am participating in), that I am actually OLD ENOUGH to have a boyfriend – a decision I am allowed to make, a grown-up decision on par with going to college eight hours away from home (a decision that I was allowed to make and follow through with!!), and that my boyfriend is really a nice guy. I told her that I wouldn’t date anyone I didn’t see myself with in the future. I wasn’t fooling around. Most importantly, finding love shouldn’t be mutually exclusive from the desire to have a successful career. In the end, my mother isn’t fully comfortable with the fact that I am kind of a “grown-up”, but I am fully content with her blessings, anyway. Plus, she really likes him.
Handling girl drama as an adult is also weird, because it’s like watching your past unfold in front of you. It all seems so ridiculous. It’s like looking at photographs of yourself from middle school. Like, was I really that person? The dynamics of the room I’m currently living in on campus is unique, but extremely predictable, since being the odd one out comes with its consequences. Besides being the only girl out of the four of us in the College Honors Program, I am also from a very different place than my roommates – or places, rather. I am a different person, overall. I did not grow up in one town my entire life. I have extremely ambitious goals which sound almost unreachable coming from my mouth (BUT I WILL REACH THEM, TRUST ME). I am a “social justice warrior” (I have been called this many times, but despite its negative connotation, I am proud to be socially aware). I am very active on campus; I am a part of student government organizations, diversity clubs, orientation staff. I write for a magazine. I am politically active. These things do not make me better or superior, but they certainly do make me different, and they help me in standing out, especially when someone looks at the four of us together in one room. Being on a different schedule than these girls, doing different things than these girls – being different FROM these girls – has had its consequences. They have spent a lot of time together this term – showering, eating, studying, going to class all at the same times, on very similar schedules – and I rarely spent time with them this term, which is different than last term, since I was still in the process of making friends. I did spend plenty of time with them. I also think having a boyfriend has contributed to the decreasing amount of time I have been around them lately, since I have been hanging out with him and his friends, while also making my own in his company. Naturally, living with these girls but not actually being a part of their clique resulted in negative attitudes towards me, some of them resulting from legitimate causes (I play music too loudly, I’ve used paper plates once that weren’t mine, I accidentally broke a picture frame and a wine glass) and some of them not (“You had no friends in high school, so obviously there’s something wrong with you”, “You’re smart enough, you should have common sense not to do things that piss us off”, “You complain too much when we hang out with you”, “You claim you have money but when I offered you Ramen you still ate it? If you’re so rich go buy your own Ramen?”). Naturally, living with girls who are cliquish – living with girls who don’t get you, had its negative consequences. All of these complaints occurred shortly after my decision to become an adult, so I had no choice but to accept what I did was wrong, try to get them to understand my point of view, compromise and not tell them how I felt about their roommate capabilities (and friendship capabilities) and finally, move on. Although their words still eat away at me – especially the personal attacks – I have to keep moving forward with my life. Although I want to move out, it simply isn’t possible due to the lack of available rooms on campus. So, my newly-founded adult attitude asks me to accept what I can’t change.
Entering into adulthood comes with its obstacles. Sometimes I wish I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life, that I could party with my friends and not give a damn about the consequences, that I could still hold the “I’m a teenager, I’m invincible” attitude, that I wasn’t an adult. But I am better off accepting the transition than fighting it. I am better off telling my mother the truth, ignoring those who try to bring me down, picking my fights. I am better off being the adult I’ve worked my entire life thus far to become.