Thursday, October 17, 2013

Living Life Backwards

When Melissa first gave us this week's Thursday Blog Project topic of: How do you act your age? Are there ways you act older or younger than your age? I wasn't sure how I was going to attack those questions.

I don't feel my age ... or at least most of the time I don't feel my age.  There are moments where I tire more easily than I use to or I'll share a thought I'm having with someone at the very moment I have it because I know I'll forget to tell them if I don't and recognize that I no longer have the baby face I use to.  (I definitely look more mature.)  When I speak about various topics I do so in a thoughtful and mature way.  You can tell that I'm somewhat of a subject matter expert on various topics which has clearly developed over time.  On the flip side, there are ways that I act that I'm not proud of as they are immature and not the way someone "my age" should act.

Like many adults, I work because I have to support myself.  Since it's just me, how I spend my money is up to me.  There is no one else I need to get input from on whether or not getting a Kate Spade purse is or isn't a good idea.  Another reason I would argue that I "don't act my age" falls along similiar lines as I don't have a family to care for.  Okay, I have Elsie... so yes, I do have a "kid" in some regards; however, amongst other things I don't have to run Elsie to soccer practice and worry about her academic performance in school.

In someways I've feel like people have unjustly judged me for the fact that I don't have the responsibility of a family.  As if I don't want these responsibilities (which is SO NOT the case).  In recent years, I've admittedly been quite selfish and childish about the things I tend to focus on and put energy towards, but in someway feel justified in being so as I spent a lot of my childhood being an adult, which is something I didn't realize until this fact was pointed out to me this past summer.  Let me explain . . . .

In June I went to a writing retreat in Michigan.  At dinner on the first night of the retreat I was sitting next to a woman who is currently taking time off from working to care for her parents as they are not in good health.  In an effort to show her that I understood what she was experiencing I shared with her how from a very young age I knew my dad wouldn't be around my whole life and how I watched cancer take over his body when I was 13 years-old.  Then, I told her how I took care of my grandfather on my mom's side my first year/ year and a half of college when Alzheimer's began to severely impact him.  Now, I wasn't telling her all this as a way to be all "look at me" or trump her in anyway, but more to explain that I could relate to what she was experiencing.  Once I was through sharing she said to me, "My goodness!  You never got to be kid, did you?  You've been an adult most of your life."  To be honest, I never thought of it that way.  It just was what it was.  But she was right.  

When I think back at all the things I experienced in my childhood, for all intents and purposes my "childhood" ended very early in my life.  I guess in someways it's for this reason I don't feel the need to apologize when I act in a "childish" manner.  We all have our moments and sometimes I just feel the need for "my moment" of weakness to last  as a way to make-up for what I didn't have in the past.  Whether this is the right way to approach things is questionable, but it's how things roll with me sometimes. (I've gotten a lot better over the years!)

I don't want to be a Debbie Downer and end this post in on a negative note.  It's just things that this topic has made me think about.  Often I as though I'm living life backwards and not moving forwards; however, I think that is the farthest thing from the truth.  Though I still would like to think I will one day have the responsibility of caring for kids and a husband (which will make me seem like I'm "acting my age") I think the fact that I'm taking care of me and focusing on what makes me happy is one of the most mature things I can do and actually displays best how I "act my age".

Now that I've talked about how I'm "acting my age", please take a moment to see what my fellow bloggers have to say about how they act their age:

Momarock (Sara)

Merryland Girl (Melissa)

1 comment:

  1. "I think the fact that I'm taking care of me and focusing on what makes me happy is one of the most mature things I can do and actually displays best how I "act my age"."
    I like this, and it says a lot about who you are as a person. I think no matter what your circumstances in life, this is all anyone can really strive for, is to focus on happiness and taking care of themselves to the best of their ability. Great post!