Signs that you are maturing even if you don’t think you are
Your 20s are a strange time. When they begin, you feel like the possibilities are limitless; you relish your newfound freedom. But then for the rub: the tug-of-war between being that carefree gal and a responsible woman. It’s a rare few of us who don’t experience a bit of Peter Pan syndrome. But even if you aren’t yet at a point that is considered quintessentially “adult,” with all its attendant markers (marriage, family of your own), you are more than likely maturing, even if you don’t realize it. Sometimes it’s the little things that lead to the big changes. If you answer yes to any of the following questions, congratulations. Our little [insert your name here] is growing up!
Do you find yourself going to sleep early because you don’t want to be tired the next day?
Gone are the days when you lived in the present and never worried about how what you did today actually affects what happens tomorrow. Now, you find that you consider your actions a bit more carefully. You know what “one last drink” really means, and sometimes you decide to pass. Hey, you’ve got work/Pilates/errands to do in the morning.
Have your work clothes and “going-out” clothes become one in the same?
It seems the priority has shifted from looking hot to feeling comfortable. Your boots take you from the office to the bar, and your evening wardrobe is no longer NSFW.
Have you complained at least once about noise and/or lighting in the past month?
When you are at a restaurant or bar, do you sometimes find the music bothersome because you can’t hear anything anyone is saying? Have you considered calling the cops to put an end to a neighbor’s rager? Is the flashlight on your iPhone one of your favorite apps? Yup, the transition is under way.
Do you hang up your clothing instead of throwing it on the floor at night?
This is a big accomplishment! You are learning to respect your possessions. Possibly because (1) you are now the one paying for them and/or (2) no one is there to pick them up for you.
Do you feel joy instead of disappointment when you aren’t invited somewhere and/or plans are cancelled?
You have realized that you don’t need to be invited everywhere and, furthermore, you don’t want to be. A night in is more than OK. It’s welcome.
When you see a fussy young child with their mother do you think “aw” instead of “ugh”?
You used to think kids were cute, from a distance, but the stroller patrol got on your nerves. Maybe the sight of a child throwing a tantrum had you swearing, “I’ll never have kids.” Now, it seems you have a hard time restraining yourself from reaching out and pinching the chubby cheeks of any random baby you see.
Do you spend more than 30 seconds picking out a bottle of wine instead of instantly grabbing the least-expensive one?
Quality starts to matter more because sometimes alcohol is meant to be tasted and enjoyed, not chugged. You may just crave a drink instead of a whole bottle and a complete blackout.
Do you want that person you like to pick up the phone and call you instead of just texting?
As the dating expert Patti Stanger says, “Texting is for boys, calling is for men.” And as we mature, we are looking for the grownups.
Have you opened a savings account?
Suze Orman would be so proud. If you resist your urge to take that weekly paycheck and get to shoppin’, there must be some part of you that knows saving is important, even if you don’t fully understand why you already have to be thinking about retirement.
How’d you fair? I thought so! Just as winter becomes spring, and spring becomes summer, you my child, become an adult.