When I was a teenager, my mom always told me she would stare at me, unable to believe she had a teenager, because she felt like she was in her early twenties, tops. I always thought that was hilarious, and also a little strange, because how could you feel like you were a totally different age than you were? I felt like my age.
Now (I think you see where this is going), expect for when I am tired and overwhelmed and feel like I am 80, I am always shocked when I am reminded that I am 32. More specifically, I have a hard time remembering that I am an adult. An actual, real-life adult. With KIDS! And a HOUSE! Someone with bills and animals. I have a car that I must not only pay for, but maintain. I have to buy and prepare ALL THE FOOD for four people, including two kids who require roughly six meals a day (when they are not in the midst of a growth spurt).
Every once in a while, I will be dragging the garbage can back to the house, or luggging the groceries inside, or sitting at a stoplight, and I will notice someone else looking at me, and it is shocking to realize that they see me as an adult (or even old, as the kid at the Taco Bell drive-thru makes very clear with all the "ma'am"s he throws around). I'm not old! I'm just a kid who has a husband and a house and a few kids, and ... okay, I see where you're going with this.
Anyway, all of that back story was just to let you know that even though I have a hard time remembering I'm an adult, I have grown in little ways that I really pat myself on the back over.
EXHIBIT A: Today, while we were reading stories on Josie's bedroom floor before nap time, I felt something on my back. Of course, I assumed it was a spider crawling on me, just like every time a loose hair falls from my head to my arm. However, I held it together and kept reading. Bravo, me.
But, BUT, a few seconds later I caught something out of the corner of my eye, and it was a SPIDER CRAWLING AWAY FROM BEHIND ME. Get this: I didn't scream or cry or throw the girls off my lap. I quietly squished it* without the girls seeing.
BOOM. That situation just got ADULTED.
Now, as proud as I am for that personal growth and maturity that I exhibited today, I feel like I should admit what happened a few hours before that.
I was rushing around to clean the bathroom early this morning, and I had just scrubbed the tub, sink, and toilet, and Jeremy was about to leave, so I told him to look at the gleaming fixtures before he left because they wouldn't look that good when he got home. Josie walked over and said "Well, yeah, but look at the floor. There's dog hair all over it." My first instinct was to shout "YOU'RE the one with dog hair all over you!" Sure, I didn't actually say that. Instead, I blinked a few times and silently closed the door, but that still isn't what I'd consider a pro move.
So maybe I'm right in not feeling like an adult quite yet.
*I have all new rules when it comes to spiders, because I felt like a "squish now, ask questions later" approach was a bit too harsh since I claim to love living things and nature and blah blah blah. My new rule is a spider must die under three circumstances: 1) It is poisonous, 2) It is in my bedroom when I'm about to go to bed, 3) It's in one of my kids' bedrooms at any time of the day. I feel like this is more than fair, and it also makes me feel like an adult.
** Pro tip: NEVER tile your floor with the small shiny white tiles that you would use in a shower surround. Especially if you have a black furry animal living in the house. I can Swiffer and scrub the floor and two minutes later it looks like I've never cleaned it once. It's a real situation. This makes me feel like an adult too, but in the worst way possible.