His poor, sad desperation yesterday to prove to me that he was sick (all afternoon he kept reminding me how glad he was that I brought him home because his head really did hurt or he really couldn’t move very well, etc.) reminded me how glad I am to be a grownup. Our entire childhood and high school years, adults try and tell us we should enjoy the carefree years because it’s so much worse out here – presumably in the real world. I completely disagree. I like my freedom. I like having less to prove. And don’t tell me we’re not free because of our bosses or our children or our mortgage or our basic obligations to society as a whole. We are free.
We can carry our own pack of gum, any flavor we want, all the time and take a piece without asking. We can choose dessert even if we didn’t clean our plate, and we rarely pass up any snack no matter what the time of day, how hungry we are not, or how fattening it is – if we want it. We go to sleep when we want. We read what we want, watch what we want, get in the car and go places when we want. We make choices every single day to mess up, speak slang, sound hateful, be lazy, or play Solitaire – just for 5 minutes! – while at work, just this once, because we can and we trust ourselves to repent, move on, and make the nobler choice the next time.
Getting that high school diploma really was one of the happiest bits of liberty ever handed to us, and it’s just plain rude to tell our children otherwise. I suppose it’s partly the kid in me that knows this, but: Being a grownup, rocks.