How Will I Know When I’m Grown Up?

I had such a good hair day the other day I forgot all about my wrinkles. I know, amazing huh? The truth will set you free so I should mention I was camping, it was more than ten years ago, and there were no mirrors in the vicinity. I know the hair was good because someone emailed me a picture. I only wish they took a few more shots. These things need to be documented. I stared at that picture for quite some time, until I lost focus of the image, and became the memory. It was the last time I slept in a tent surrounded by all my children but I was blissfully unaware. There was a mild panic over a lost stuffed animal, a brief asthma attack, and a directionally challenged rodent but eventually we all settled down for the night. As I lay in the tent trying to quiet my thoughts I remember wondering if now I was officially grown up? I think it’s like drinking water only you can decide the temperature.

I remember having trouble with ants on that trip. Who knows why Noah didn’t leave them off the Ark? I suppose they do teach us something about persistence. One thing I know for sure, I was born stubborn, just ask my mom. I think being stubborn has good and bad components, mostly bad if I’m being completely honest, which I’m not. I hang on to things and circumstances way too long. I might lament over unkind words for a week, okay a month, alright a few dozen years. I know it’s awful. I’ll go to confession. When I want to stop my compulsive thoughts I come up with words I can spell using only the letters of my first name. There are five; her, cry, lye, rely, and yech. Maybe a therapist might be more helpful. I’ve come to believe maturity has more to do with letting go than hanging on to old patterns and circumstances? Sucks to be me. As the decades pass I have given up on a few things. Bikinis, martinis, and the bathroom scale come to mind. But also jealousy, pride, and my compulsion to keep the house dust free. I don’t even make my bed every day. I blush just writing that down. 

Speaking of beds, it’s the things that hide under my bed that really terrify me. At night, if I’m alone in the house, I’ll leap from the bathroom to the bed, because I envision a hand reaching out from under the bedskirt, and grabbing my ankle. What am I going to do when I’m eighty? I read somewhere, if you notice what scares you most, and you look at it closely, it will vanish. In the morning, I decide to peek under the bed, just to see what’s really down there. I found an old drawer to a wardrobe that we got rid of nearly twenty years ago but this drawer was full of maps. We didn’t have GPS on our phones back than and maps were useful. So I shoved the entire drawer under the bed. I was studying feng shui at the time and I thought the maps might lead to travel especially if I was sleeping with them. I’ve had a few opportunities to use my passport over the years so there you go. I did not notice any random appendages hiding amongst the rolls of wrapping paper or bag of bows. My husbands old baseball bat is still waiting within reach if we need to discourage intruders. We only had to use it once but that’s another blog.

“Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 18:3

What do children know more about than adults? I admit that just popped into my head. I used to eat whatever I wanted, spoke my truth, spent no time grooming, and play dominated my day. Maybe growing up is overrated? I remember how care free I was as a child. That’s a nice way of saying I was completely obnoxious and drove my parents to drink. Kids don’t really care about the future. They kind of live in the moment. I like that as a theory. The thing I want to know most about the future is not the name of our next president, or where El Chapo is hiding, I want to know if I’ll still be lamenting your unkind words, if I’ll ever have another good hair day, and if those maps lying dormant under my bed will reward me with new travel. I’ve decided we weave in and out of maturity, I’m heading out, and that’s a good thing.

“Maturity is a high price to pay for growing up.” Tom Stoppard

Tuck a few thoughts in the comments,

Let it Go

Today is a Good Day

Keep it Brief


Leave a Comment

  1. I've had a good influence by the men and women we've met in RV parks since becoming homeless and they embody what you have come to, as well. Acceptance. And it's freeing. We become younger as we age! And like children we'll enter heaven one day. ❤


  2. Awe Charli, you have such a beautiful spirit, magic words, and beautiful stories. Thank you for reading and responding. I like how you are able to bring my random thoughts into focus – acceptance. Nailed it.💜


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