Have you ever expected for something so much that when the day is close by you just don’t know what to feel anymore? Well, that is how I feel right now. My graduation is this Friday and tomorrow’s the rehearsal; I mean, I’m like right there. I’m sure that I’ll close my eyes and it’ll be Saturday and all this waiting will just be a dream. I admit, I’m a little jittery but at the same time I’m stuck in the moment, as if I don’t know what to expect even though I know what will happen. The anticipation is not killing me but the closer I get to actually wearing that graduation gown the more I want it to just happen.
Nevertheless, this post is not about my pre-graduation jitters. This post is about how being an adult sucks. Permit me to explain, dear reader: It all started yesterday morning when I realized that my bank is not a world-wide kind of bank. I noticed that aside from Puerto Rico, this bank is only located in the touristic areas of the USA. This means that I need to open a new bank account in a new bank that is near my university. This may seem like a trivial and easy thing to solve, but it’s not. To be able to open an account in said bank I need some special documents, my ID, some other paper stuff and to wire my money from my old account to my new account. This may be the paranoia and anxiety talking, but a million things could go wrong with this process. Aside from that, it means that I need to find the right bank that will accommodate all my needs as an ‘international’ student.
What I’m trying to get at is that things that seemed easy to me here in my Island are actually a hassle in the real world outside my comfort zone. From this point forward, even if I don’t want to admit it, it’s not going to be a laid back ride. I will be required of me to be on top of all my needs, monetary situations and other adult like things. The deeper I go into this adventure the more I realize that this is not Kansas anymore (oh Toto!). As an adult I have much more responsibilities to attend and to answer for which make me wonder (more often than not) if I’ll have the time and strength to do them all.
Yes reader, I know, I may be overreacting a bit; I may even be worrying about things before I get to them. Yet, I want you to understand the anxiety that one goes through when they have to go to a different place. I do have the advantage of knowing English, so language is not a problem but there are other things that I have to adapt when I get there; like the culture, slang words, customs, ideals and so on. These are only the intangible parts of my journey. I believe that they are the ones I can’t wait to encounter. My gringa bestie (she asked to be called this) kept telling me to prepare for culture shock but this is something I really want to experience. Being a future psychologist and a culture enthusiast I really welcome change and wish to compare and contrast life in the Appalachian Mountains and Puerto Rico.
On the other hand, there are the tangible things which bring more stress to my life because these are the things I can actually control; and me being a control freak, I need them to be perfect (or close to my idea of perfect). These aspects are my apartment, how close it is to my university, how far away am I from a hospital or a shopping center, taking out a loan, getting a new bank account, buying furniture; and the list goes on! There is so much to do, so much to take care of and it’s all on me. I do have help from my parents, but I’m the one that needs to plan and do all the magical things in order for my adventure to happen. It is these things that make me regret wanting to be an adult. It’s not like I can help it but it would be nice to have realized what I had when I had it.
A perfect example of this (as if the universe were conspiring against me), was today’s grunt work. My mother, for more than 35 years, was a teacher at an elementary school, today she finished cleaning out her classroom because she finally retired and I was there to help her. The school where she taught was the school where I went to when I was a kid. Like a movie, as I walked around the small school, I saw myself in every corner. Little me, through the ages of 5 through 11, running down the halls, falling down near the basketball court, and crying on my first day of class because I didn’t want to be there. It felt eerie to see myself grow up in retrospect. It felt like I left something out as I grew, something I wished I could have done more but when I walked around the school I couldn’t find a thing at fault with my journey. Yes, there were things I regretted doing and things I wished I had done, but I wonder if I had done it differently, would I be where I am now?
My childhood wasn’t perfect (no one’s is) but it did shape me. It brought me here and it will keep pushing me forward. Life as an adult is clearly never fun but as an ex co-worker put it “it has its perks; you can have sex, drink beer and eat ice cream whenever you want.” She is right (even though I don’t like beer), but the best part about being an adult is realizing that you have a future ahead of you, you have the potential to reach it and the only person who can help you is yourself. Life from here on out will not be easy, it won’t be hell either, it will be whatever I (you) make it.
As stated at the start of this post, being an adult sucks. It really does. Nevertheless, it is my job to make it suck less (twss). Here I am adulthood, take me and make me a responsible, bill-paying, kid-yelling, wine-drinking, arthritis-joint-aching adult. Just know that my inner child won’t go down without a fight.