Do you remember when you were a teenager and you imagined you’d be some absolutely brilliantly successful grown-up person by the time you were 21, and you’d make tonnes of goals in the hope that they’d get you there? I do. But now, I’m quickly approaching 22 and I’m still avoiding doing essays by writing pointless blog entries instead. I’m still sitting around in my pyjamas watching Youtube videos of people throwing eggs at everything. And, I’m still making lots of lists of things to do so I can one day become an organised person.
On the 1st of November it will be my 22nd birthday. I cannot say I like this at all. At 18 I felt like I had all this time to learn new things and grow up, but instead, I feel like I’ve spent 3 years lounging around on the sofa and scrolling through Facebook. When my grandchildren ask me how I spent my early twenties I’ll probably be like, ‘well, there was once this webpage, before we contacted each other via brain-wave machines, where you could find out about what your friends were eating or feeling sad about, and you could play this game where you matched up sweets called Candy Crush, and it was like getting drunk on Mars only with a laptop instead of alcohol and the only scenery around was your bedroom.’ And then my imaginary grandchildren will sit there with their brain-wave machines plugged in and have an effortless private conversation with each other about how crazy their Grandma is, and I’ll just sit there on my old-fashioned PC receiving ‘site does not exist’ webpages because Facebook is not a thing anymore.
Part of me imagined that by now I’d be super grown-up, and I’d be shopping for wine with my husband and have my own apartment, and ABC would have contacted me about flying over to America and writing TV shows for them, but sadly none of that has happened. Instead, I go shopping for crispy M&M’s with my parents, and live at home in a messy bedroom with posters half-hanging off the wall because I’m too lazy to pin them back up properly. And I’ve not even written a full-length script before, but ABC, if you want me to then give me a call. I’m still waiting.
So, with this awful change from 21 to super-old 22 looming I’ll have to look on the bright side and come up with some ways to pretend I’m grown up. Which means I’m going to write a list of evidence that I am a grown up. Well, kind of grown up.
Amy’s List of Growed-Up Things
For all those times I’m feeling like a failure at being an adult.
1. I’ve been to the doctors all by myself
I went and sat in a chair and told a woman ‘me poorly, me need make better’. And my mum didn’t even have to hold my hand through any of it.
2. I have a degree
I got to spend a day dressed like a wizard because I’m an adult now, and I am capable of writing big, long essays with fancy words and stuff. My degree is currently being stored on my bedroom floor because that’s just how grown-up I am.
3. I’ve started making contributions to my pension
At my old job they sent us a scary letter saying we all had to enroll in a pension scheme, or else they would enroll us anyway, so for the past year and a half I’ve been losing part of my wage to my 68-year-old self. But apparently, I didn’t read the letter properly, as you only actually had to enroll if you were over 22. Thanks to my stupidity, old me will be laughing in a fancy rocking chair because of all the extra cash she’s getting.
4. I have a driving license
It’s pink and I sometimes “accidentally” get it out when I’m in public, so I can be like ‘Yeah, I’m grown-up now, they let me drive cars and things’. But mainly, it’s pink!
5. I can independently use the oven
Dear 13-year-old Amy, I know you think the oven is a scary demon and will burn you more than an excited dragon, and that your mum is like some cooking machine or something, but by the time you’re my age you will be able to use the oven like an absolute boss. By which, I mean, you are very experienced in tipping a bag of frozen chicken nuggets on a tray and leaving them in the oven for half-an-hour. And you only burn yourself occasionally. I wish the same could be said for the food.
So, I haven’t learnt how to pay the bills, or make my bed without getting angry that the quilt likes to bunch itself into a ball in the corner of the sheet. But I can sit in a chair without my mum and accidentally sign-up for pension schemes that probably won’t exist by the time I’m 68. Success? Well, I’ll call it that.
Maybe one day I will become a proper adult. Though probably not by my 22nd birthday.