Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Growing Older, Growing up

I’m trying to figure out if I’m getting old or I’m just growing up. In my opinion, there is a difference.

Up until fairly recently, I’ve embraced the fact that I’m an adult but I’ve also enjoyed some ‘younger’ activities. I loved going to concerts, particularly Green Day. I loved dropping everything and going on a weekend trip to visit a friend. I loved going out and about, spending days at Disneyland and forgetting the realities of life.

It’s not to say I don’t still enjoy some of that stuff, if not all of it. It’s just…not the same.

For example, it used to be when I found out Green Day were on tour, I’d research where would be the easiest, most convenient place to see them and I’d find a way to go. Now, while I still enjoy their music, I’ve seen them six times in concert already. If they came to Cincinnati or somewhere else rather convenient, I’d want to go. It’s just that I don’t want to go that extra mile, to fly to Vegas or L.A. to see them. I don’t need to go that extra mile.

There was a part of me, a passion that Green Day used to fill. It sounds a little lame when I say that but it’s true. I got excited to see them. I wanted to know what they were doing, who they were, what drove them, why they wrote songs. Through my entire life, that’s been the case with one band or another, one movie or book or TV show. There’s always been something that I’m passionate about.

I’m not saying I don’t have that passion anymore. It’s just…changed.

I find now that I’m happiest hanging out with my family and the puppies, just…hanging out. I love sitting outside on a cool evening, watching the puppies play, drinking a glass of wine and enjoying the fact that I don’t have to be doing anything else.

I’m horribly afraid this means I’ve become boring. Or, worse, old.

Although, I’m not saying I don’t enjoy going out and doing stuff. I just don’t feel like I have to do something in order to enjoy myself. Sometimes doing nothing is far nicer.

This worries me. What worries me more is I have friends who are older than me who enjoy being busy almost every moment of their life and while what they’re doing is fun, the idea of me having that kind of timeframe makes me feel slightly panicky inside.

What does this mean? In all honesty, I don’t know. I suppose it’s a natural human reaction to compare yourself to others, to say, why aren’t I doing that? Why don’t I want to do that? Is it ok that I don’t do that?

I suppose when I look at it, in a way, I’ve always been a bit…well…boring. As a child, I liked to be read to by whoever would read. When I learned to read, I spent about 10 years in books without really coming up for air and only then because I realized it was probably time to do something other than just read. I always preferred board games to sports though I can appreciate some sports, just not playing competitively. I tried to act but realized watching shows and managing them was far more fun. I find it more fun to stay home and watch a really great TV show than paying too much money to see a crappy film at the theatre. This is not something I ever thought I’d say since I used to think going to the movies was the best pastime ever. I still enjoy it but I now think before I shell out my $11.50 to see a movie rather than just seeing anything that looks entertaining.

Eek gads, I sound like a boring old Monkeypants. Before you know it, I’ll be shouting, “Get off my lawn, varmints!” to the neighbourhood kids.

Although, I honestly have no idea what a varmint is. I think I saw it in a Crankshaft cartoon once. In which case, the fact that I don’t find Crankshaft funny means I can’t be that old, right?

I digress. What I’m saying is that I’ve always been a bit of a homebody. It’s just become magnified by age. This doesn’t mean I’m likely to become a hermit. No, if I spend too much time at home, I get the itch to go out, to do something. I just don’t have to do that as often as I used to. I don’t need to do it, I want to do it. I think there’s a difference.

I suppose what it comes down to is that I’m actually happy with my life and pretty content. Naturally, I think it’d be rather nice to have a Mr. Captain Monkeypants in my life but given my online dating duds, that’s not too easy to come by. Yet, I have a house, two amazingly fabulous puppies who make me laugh and smile every day and the ability to sit down and write whenever I feel like it. I no longer have to struggle with the easy procrastinations of a fairly new writer, the days when it was easier to clean out the fridge than it was to just buckle down and write. No, these days, if I have an hour, I’ll go write- no thinking needed, I just do it and it comes out pretty easily and pretty well.

I have a family fairly nearby and a job that pays the bills. It also gives me plenty of blog fodder/writing ideas.

I have a published book that’s getting some great feedback from readers.

It all seems rather nice when I type it out but the thing that I think is scaring me is the eternal question, is it enough? It’s not glamourous. It’s not exciting.

But it’s fun. It’s relaxing and it’s fulfilling.

Perhaps that’s the key from moving from youth to true adulthood- you realize that it’s ok to be fulfilled even when the fulfillment comes in the form of everyday comforts.

Or, maybe I’m just really boring.

Either way I’ll take it. (Although if you hear me say “varmints”, I’ll rethink that).

Happy Wednesday!

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