I think I’m ready to grow back down. No, really. I think it’s time. It’s clear I missed something when I grew up the first time. I probably wouldn’t have appreciated it then. But now… Now I think it’s exactly what I need.
Remember when you were little, and you wanted do something, and your parents said no. At those moments, I always thought to myself, I can’t WAIT until I’m a grown up and I can do whatever I want. I can make all of my own decisions and my own rules, and no one is going to tell me I can’t.
But that never really happened. I missed that stage. I want to go back.
It’s like pink highlights in my hair. The other day I saw this picture of a girl with really amazing pink highlights in her hair, and I said to my husband, “I want pink highlights.” He laughed and moved on. I was only a little bit serious when I said it the first time, but his reaction made me more serious. “No, really. I want pink highlights.” He looked at me as if I had just announced I wanted to be abducted by aliens.
This is exactly the type of thing that you say you want to do as a kid, and someone tells you that you can’t. So you think, if I was a grown up, I could do that. I could have pink highlights. No one could tell me no. Except by the time you’re old enough that you feasibly could make that decision for yourself, the rest of the world tells you that you’re too old, and you still can’t do it!
Where is the age where you get to do all the ridiculous and wonderful things you dreamed of as a little kid?
I’ve pondered over this. College. That’s the best answer I can come up with. That’s when you do ridiculous things. And I did. But the average college student still doesn’t have absolute freedom. If you’re lucky enough to have someone funding your higher education for you, there are strings. If you aren’t in a major where ridiculousness is accepted and cherished, there are strings. If you have a job, there are strings. And the lack of income? Major string. And college itself? Most schools don’t let you just take off and then welcome you back whenever you wander in again. You have commitments. You have to be IN college.
I suppose this is where the backpacking around Europe after college idea comes in. A few moments of freedom after the restraints of college and before the restraints of the real world. But my year off wasn’t quite that full of adventure, because I was too set on figuring out what to do next. I missed it.
I want to go on an adventure. I want to pack up a convertible (that I don’t have, because it’s obviously not sensible in the Midwest) and hit the road. I only want to pack things I like. I’ll pack my husband, but he has to throw sensibility to the wind with me. I want to be reckless and ridiculous and absolutely not grown up.
(I also want to find this car…)
But speaking of this car… I couldn’t buy it. Because the voices in my head of the ones who raised me, who taught me to make sensible choices, would talk me out of it. I need to put them on hiatus too.
I want to hop on a plane to some place I’ve always wanted to go, regardless of how it will drain my bank account. I want to leave my grown up worries behind and just do something crazy. No worrying about jobs, and savings accounts, and down payments, and plans and paperwork, and what people will think…
No consequences. Just pink highlights.