A couple of nights ago I went to a camp reunion. It was a weeknight after 7pm and I was out, wearing real clothes and makeup. I even had a little wine. On a Wednesday. As I was saying my goodbyes to the many camp friends I made after spending almost two decades at Pine Crest Day Camp, the place that became my summer home, one of those friends made a request. He asked me to write a post about adulting and how hard it is (I think his actual words were “how much it sucks” but whatever).
I really didn’t think I would have enough material for a post to be honest…then I started thinking about how my immediate reaction was that it was novel that I was out on a Wednesday night in NOT yoga pants. So I immediately took off my readers and stopped pulling rogue grey hairs out of my head with a tweezer and grabbed my laptop.
Do I think adulting sucks? Sometimes. There are highs and lows and I wouldn’t trade my current life to go back to my 20s by any means. But..I do not think today’s youth have a true understanding of what it means to adult, so in the spirit of kindness, I thought I would provide a glimpse into adulting. A real, unfiltered and accurate one. Because I know when I was in my 20s I thought being an adult meant you had a savings account, your own vacuum cleaner and drank coffee you made at home every day after taking a multivitamin. There’s some truth to that, but there’s so much more.
In no particular order here are some truths about adulting you should know…
Home ownership is expensive AF. Sometimes I miss the days when I was a renter and could call my landlord about a leaky toilet or broken appliance. Now it’s all on us. And there is ALWAYS something that needs to be fixed. I currently have a live power line running on the ground on the side of my house because last week we literally lost power in half the house and they had to replace a bad line. Every week it’s a different repair and we’re making it rain from our savings account. Also, once you have children your house is no longer yours. Every square inch gets taken over by toys and dolls and iPads and sippy cups. If you are a woman the same thing applies to your purse. Reach into get your wallet and you’ll come out with a surprise like a handful of half-eaten goldfish and an LOL doll.
Feeding a family is hard AF. I LOVE to cook. But now it’s basically an obligation because I have an actual family to feed. I can’t let my refreigerator go bare. I can barely keep up with the needs of feeding 4 mouths and figruing out what to make all the time. These people always want to eat and it’s my job to feed them because we can’t go out or bring in food every night. And there’s no magic sorority house with hot meals on the table three times a day. I am the sorority house now.
Cleaning up after everyone is annoying AF. I admit that I am Type A and I like things a certain way. But for the love of god, I am constantly cleaning up after the people and dogs who inhabit my house, because spoiler alert…if I don’t my house will start to resemble one of those pig styes on the show Hoarders. Toys, dishes, asses. Sanitizing, cleaning, wiping. All day every day. It literally doesn’t stop. I’m like the Glengarry Glen Ross of motherhood but my ABC stands for Always Be Cleaning. Do not even get me started on the laundry situation. If only I could count that as cardio.
Motherhood is serious AF. My most important and amazing job is being a mom. I have two of the most perfect little girls on the planet but they are a full-time job in addition to my full-time job of running my own business, in addition to all of the things listed above. Someone is always crying or hungry or bored. Meltdowns can happen if you cut the crust off the bread wrong (oh yes people, there is a right and wrong way but I have no fucking clue what they are…does anyone know?). There are lunches to pack, school projects and shows, playdates, sleepovers, mood swings, glitter…so. much. glitter. Some days it’s a miracle if I can actually put real pants on and brush my teeth.
Always tired AF. Like always (see all of the above for possible causes of said exhaustion). I can maybe muster up enough energy to go out to dinner once every couple of weeks, but it takes mental and physical prep. I am secretly happy sometimes when plans get cancelled and I can put the kids to bed, change into clean pajamas, eat a meal with two hands and watch shows with profanity with my husband instead of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. The bags under my eyes no longer react to the most expensive concealer and sometimes I do things like forget to put coffee in the coffee pot and brew water instead.
Crowded AF. Remember when you used to shower and pee alone? Well, when you have kids you will now do those things in front of an audience. Sometimes your husband will even join, but not in a sexy way. More like bringing the baby in because he’s trying to kill time and occupy her and he’ll open the curtain and say, “Let’s see what mommy’s doing!”. I’ll tell you what mommy is doing. Mommy is trying to take a shower alone and shave her legs (both of them) without a parade through the bathroom. There’s no knocking on the bathroom door. Your kids will just barge in while you are on the toilet like it’s no big deal to show you something they drew, or to show you some piece of shit toy they want that popped up on the iPad while they were watching a kid their age on YouTube unbox toys as he gets paid millions of dollars (because that’s a thing now), or to ask for a drink while your husband sits comfortably on the couch waiting to see the outcome of his fantasy football draft. The bathroom becomes crowded with kids and dogs and nobody cares that you have shampoo in your eye and are getting cold because the shower door is wide open.
Medicated AF. You now have things like advil, tums and pepto bismol not only in your medicine cabinet, but also in your purse. You stock up on these staples at Costco, which has become a weekend outing. Because when you and your husband go out to dinner and eat so fucking fast before there’s time for a kid meltdown, your stomach will suffer so you need to medicate with antacid immediately if not sooner. You also proactively take purse advil if you have wine with dinner because even one glass can result in a headache the next morning. Those days when you rocked a bikini in cancun without a care (or any cellulite) and poured tequila down your throat seem like a weird dream that could not have ever been your life. You can’t even smell tequila without dry heaving as a matter of fact.
Mom Friends AF. You now have mom friends. Sometimes there is crossover with your previous friends, if they had kids around the same time. You talk about things like your kids’ poop and eating habits why your husband takes so long in the bathroom and the latest BOGO on diapers at Target.
Easily Excited AF. Listen, I too used to get excited about happy hour and weekend jaunts to south beach. Now, I am legitimately excited about things like:
- Having a car with remote start so the air is on before I get in and that I can press a button to open the trunk from my key fob to load a stroller or groceries with ease.
- I also do the jig when my diet ginger ale is on sale at Publix.
- It’s like winning the lotto when I get a $10 giftcard at Target for spending $50 on baby formula.
- I feel like a kept woman when I see my husband emptying the dishwasher.
This is not meant to scare anyone who has not yet entered real adulthood, but rather to provide a realistic view. Listen, it’s coming for you and there’s nothing you can do about it. So just accept it, stock up on antacid, get a good pair of readers so you can actually read the dosage info on a label with writing that all of a sudden seems impossibly small, and get ready to cook, clean and parent like a boss.
This is your life now.