What Do You Mean I Can't Have Chocolate For Breakfast?!
and other questions I have (frequently) asked myself as an adult.
Growing up, I was under the common misconception that all I wanted to do was be an adult, because making my own rules was going to be so rad- and I know for a fact I was not alone.
Here’s the truth though, pals.
Being an adult? Not all it’s cracked up to be!
Now I know the majority of you reading this have been on the same ride as me for a while now, so I’m sure it’s not really much of a surprise. But at the same time- here I am, surprised as ever 12 whole sun rotations into adulthood- my childhood misconceptions exploding left and right.
Some common misconceptions I’ve faced:
1. Chocolate isn’t an acceptable breakfast food (but it does serve as a good post breakfast snack)
This one still comes as a shock to me and is one that I test frequently because as far as my still-lingering childhood ideologies are concerned, this just can’t be right. Alas, it is. Chocolate, while delicious, sugary, and soul-reviving, really holds little to no nutritious value; nor is it filling, which has shown me time and time again that it is not a great breakfast option. Rest assured, my fellow young-at-hearts, after surveying a well accredited focus group* it has been deemed a perfectly acceptable post-breakfast snack; as studies** have shown that there “is no such thing as too early for chocolate”. Snack on, homies, snack on.
* my Facebook Friends
** one Facebook Status posted to said friends.
2. Vacations only happen in your wildest dreams.
This one may be a bit of a stretch as I have, and continue to go on vacations in adulthood, however- as a kid I just thought they kinda just happened. The whole planning, saving up time off work, and saving for a trip never occurred to me. I’d like to go back to that whole- vacations just happen- mentality for good. Want to jetset to the African Savannah for the weekend? Do it. A weekend in Bora Bora? You were just there! More realistically I am island hopping off the coast of Sandusky Bay (believe me, I am NOT complaining) and sunning myself on the shores of Lake Erie. Beggars can’t be choosers, right?
3. The Game of Life salary cards have failed you(and so has M*A*S*H).
I have yet to meet someone who has made $100,000 educating the youth of America (though in my humble opinion, they definitely should) as I have in The Game of Life, nor have I met a friend who had 22 kids and married Leonardo DiCaprio like they did in M*A*S*H. However, growing up, both of these were the surefire keys to the future. Especially M*A*S*H- that was no joke. Adulthood is like The Game of Life in that sometimes all you want to do is move forward but the spinner just keeps coming up off the game so it takes 4 or 5 tries, and then when you finally start moving forward you get stopped by taxes or some sort of untimely accident- and that little salary card you have in your hand starts to look even smaller. Welcome to adulthood.
4. You can’t become a celebrity just because you want to (but do you really even want to?)
If I channeled ¼ of the effort I put into meticulously choreographing every *NSYNC, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Backstreet Boys and LFO song into my current “big kid job” I probably wouldn’t be laughing at the logistics of the $100,000 Game of Life salary card. In fact, that wouldn’t even cross my mind. Childhood me was deadset on being the next great Amanda Bynes or Lindsey Lohan ( both in her prime, pre-meltdown) and I wasn’t going to let anything stop me- even if I didn’t have the talent to back it up, I would just make it happen on sheer will alone. By the time I was grown up, I would be living in style on my luxury yacht cruising the Caribbean, chocolate fondue for breakfast, lunch, AND dinner with my 7 dogs and equally famous husband (most likely from one of the aforementioned boy bands). Adult-sized me knows that that’s not how life works and the closest I am currently getting to that luxurious lifestyle is treating myself to a Jamocha Shake from Arby’s on a Wednesday.
5. Staying up all night really isn’t all it’s cracked up to be
I have a distinct memory from when I was 7 or 8 where I swore up and down that “When I’m 30, I’m going to stay up every night until midnight watching trash T.V. !” In all actuality at age 30, if it’s Monday- Friday I struggle to stay up past 10pm, and if it’s the weekend don’t even bother trying to make plans with me past 9 because that just isn’t going to happen*! Really, an 8 hour sleep for me is an extreme luxury, but anything less than 6 hours is unheard of and there is no possible way that I will function on that little of sleep. Plus, I’m Irish- so under eye circles are a very real thing.
*shout out to my boyfriend who has been able to get me to first leave the house after 9 pm on the weekends, although he is two years younger than me and doesn’t yet understand that the post-30 life includes a magnetic force to your home and makes anything past 9 pm feel not worthy of putting on real pants.
6. Your mom isn’t going to make important phone calls for you anymore. (Like to the doctor, ordering pizza, or to get you out of school*).
Luckily the internet has stepped up its game since my childhood days when these dreams first started and gives you an out for having to call to order pizza- but the doctor, in most cases, has yet to jump on that bandwagon. And sorry, young me, but there is still nothing more terrifying than calling the doctor to make an appointment for yourself- that’s IF you can find a doctor that is in your insurance network- a creature of a different breed in and of itself. And you definitely can’t fake sick to your parents to get yourself out of that Monday- Friday work routine, that’s all on you and brings a heck of a lot more karma than it used to.
Basically, Jeffrey the Giraffe* had it right with his whole not wanting to grow up thing. Suspend your disbelief and live in your childhood moments for as long as you can because adulthood truly is one big overrated, bill-filled trap.
*who also doesn’t exist anymore because (sorry to burst your bubble, tiny version of me) TOYS ‘R’ US IS NOW JUST A RELIC. That’s right, you physically cannot go there as an adult because it just doesn’t exist. But don’t worry- it’s replaced with your adult version of a toy store- Target- which will very much fill the giraffe-sized void in your heart.