I’m really tired of people who complain that adulting is hard.
First, adulting isn’t even a real word, just a mashup where lazy people turn a noun into a verb by adding -ing at the end. Second, it’s one more way everyone whines about how tough life is and how their own lives are the toughest of all. Bunch o’ wimps.
You know what’s hard? Childing, that’s what. In fact, it’s second only to high-schooling on the list of things people never want to relive in life. Nobody says, “If I had my life over, I’d learn to poop on the toilet sooner,” or, “I really miss the active shooter drills. I made some great friends while hiding in the closet.”
No, they do not.
It all starts when it takes you eight months to realize the thing that keeps bopping you in the head is your own arm, and a bunch of giants pass you from one to the other until you just know one of them is going to eat you. Worse, you develop specific crying noises to let them know whether you’re wet or hungry and the giants always guess the wrong opening.
Then you’re two years old and you’ve already made the leap to adulthood. You complain, you whine, you’re stubborn, you’re demanding…just like them. The giants hate it, of course. They call it the terrible twos and punish you for the crime of premature adulting.
You persevere, though, and try to speak like the giants, but they keep saying things like “ooogy cutie baby boogey yumyum” and it becomes clear they never want you to learn how to speak at all. Eventually, you figure out how to communicate with them without ever saying “ooogy cutie baby boogey yumyum,” but every time you ask for something, the answer is, “No.”
You don’t get to choose where you’ll go for dinner, what you’ll eat, or how many hours you’ll have to sit in the car on the way to Aunt Jenny's house. You don’t get to choose your clothes or where you’ll go on vacation or which shows you’ll watch or when you’ll go to sleep. Yeah, the giants will sometimes pick things you like, but it’s never really your choice and you know it. Meanwhile, they sound so brave and caring as they tell everyone, “I’m doing it all for my child.”
Being a kid is tough, 24/7. No, you don’t have to pay any bills or deal with the homeowners’ association, but you’re essentially a pinball careening from bumper to bumper. If you survive, you gain some sense of who you are and where you fit in, but then it all falls apart as you plunge into the two-headed hell-scape of puberty and high school. Plus, more active shooter drills, because nothing says carefree childhood as convincingly as hiding from strangers who want to kill you.
Then you arrive at adulting, the stage you’ve been envying since you were three. Yes, you have to work for a living and pay for stuff, but you get to choose where you live and what stuff you buy, what you’ll have for dinner and what movies you’ll watch. You get to share your opinions online and you control the music you’ll listen to in the car. You aren’t trapped in the back seat, pleading for “Baby Shark” while your father tortures you with Phish.
I haven’t started decrepitude-ing yet, but I’m 100% sure adulting will be my favorite life stage. I’m old enough to have survived a million mistakes and I’ve learned the lessons from at least a few of those errors. I don’t need permission from my parents if I want to go to the park or see an R-rated movie and I can make my own choices when I’m fooding.
It turns out that adulting is the easiest part of life. The complaint department is now closed.
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Who writes this stuff?
Dadwrites oozes from the warped mind of Michael Rosenbaum, an award-winning author who spends most of his time these days as a start-up business mentor, book coach, photographer and, mostly, a grandfather. All views are his alone, largely due to the fact that he can’t find anyone who agrees with him.