I am four and a half weeks and three finals away from my three week summer break. After that, I’ll spend the remainder of my summer interning at Lands’ End for 12 weeks, with just a 48 hour turnover between that and starting my last semester of college. I know I sound like a broken record, but this is all going by too quickly. I got an email about applying for graduation the other day. Who, me? I’m not grown up enough for that. The idea that in less than a year I will be at a grown up job terrifies me. And in just eight days, I’ll be 21. What is that? Seriously. This kid is not grown up enough.
I’ve learned a lot in college. A lot. And the thing is, you don’t know realize how much you’ve learned until it’s put to the test. I’ve learned a lot about myself, mainly over the last year, but I also just came to the realization that I have retained a lot of nearly useless information during my years in school. Now, not all of it is useless, but a good, solid chunk of it is. How did I figure all of this out? Well, it started as most epiphanies do–playing Balderdash with my family at one in the morning. We used to play this all of the time when I was little, but I usually had to play on someone else’s team, because honestly, ten year olds don’t know anything about anything. So I’d play on my Grandpa’s team. We’d get our answers off of beer cans and the newspaper (which led to my infamous answer, “Moline Man found in field.” <<<See what I’m saying about ten year olds knowing nothing?). I tried playing by myself, even in high school and I was still just awful. But on this particular night this past weekend, something was different. I was able to rattle off bullshit left and right; Everything from Sergei Eisenstein (JLMC 454), to coagulating fibers (TC 204). And it sounded legit evidently, because my dad picked mine nearly everytime. And that’s when two things dawned on me:
1. I’ve learned a lot of pretty useless information in the past three years.
2. I’ve made it–I’m one of the adults.
I know it sounds funny calling myself an adult when I just said that I’m not a grown-up, but I think there is a difference. Legally, I’ve been an adult for nearly three years. That didn’t mean much to me. And heck, I’m still in the kid cousin Christmas gift exchange instead of the adult one. I’m hanging on to being a kid in certain ways because being a grown-up terrifies me. When I hear the word “grown-up”, I automatically think of having money problems, being single forever, paying bills, fixing my own car, losing my personal life, and never seeing my family and friends anymore. Please cue a minor panic attack. And I don’t want that. I still want to be fun, well, as fun as I can get. So, with my 21st birthday sneaking up on me, I decided I want to redefine that and work on myself, so I’m up for the task.
So here is my [working] list of things I want/want to do as an adult:
•I need to be better with money. I know I’ve mentioned this previously in my goals for the year post, but I need to keep improving. I know things will be easier when I have a steady income and I’m working more than one day each week. But in order to do well then, I need to work on it now.
•I need more self-control. In ways I can be really good with this, but in others, I’m the poster child for having zero self-control. I’ve been using myfitnesspal to try to stay healthy and I was doing so well until New York. I kept telling myself when I got back, I would go back to eating well again and working out. It’s been a hard transition. It also doesn’t help that I have a giant bag of easter candy sitting on my desk. I need to be able to say no, to more than just food. I’m terrible at it. I’m a giant pushover as well, so that needs to change.
•I need to accept failure. I’ve been working on it. I have about six weeks to understand and accept the fact that I’ll lose my GPA. If I can overcome that, I’m pretty confident I can overcome anything.
•I need to stop fearing the future and live in the now. I’m such a worrier and I’m constantly thinking “what if this happens?” or “what would I even do when that happens?” so much that I am not even thinking about tomorrow, or the next day, let alone today. I’m always so concerned that I’ll end up broke and alone. I kind of just need to suck it up, have faith that it will all work out in the end, and not be so concerned with what others think of me. I just need to work on myself and learn to be happy as is. I’ve always been someone who focuses on my friends and family, often before myself. I need to take myself into consideration sometimes and quit putting everyone’s happiness before my own. It’s no way to live life. On that same note, I’ve been working on not caring what everyone else outside of my friends and family thinks of me. I have a strong personality, so I will meet plenty of people who don’t like me. Who talk about me to others, even my friends. Who outright want me to fail. I need to be able to say “It doesn’t matter, I don’t care” and actually mean it.
•I want to be able to break the rules without having extreme anxiety. I’ve been a pretty sheltered kid. My dad was my high school principal, so I could literally do no wrong or everyone and their mom would be talking about it. Even when I didn’t do anything wrong, somehow, they were still talking about it. This carried into college. I never skipped class. I always did my homework early and read every chapter of every book. I always played it safe and I’m a little sick of it. I need to be able to have those experiences that normal people have that they can look back on and tell their kids, hey, don’t do what I did. I have extremely few of those and part of me hates it. Don’t get me wrong, my parents raised all three of us extremely well, but I’ve been the world’s most boring college student. I don’t do anything ever. My outlet for breaking the rules has been limited specifically to fashion. Because of such a limited outlet, I break just about every typical “style rule” there is. Black with brown. White after Labor Day. Any rule related to footwear for specific occasions. Menswear as womenswear. Matching accessories. Pattern mixing. I’ve done it all. If anything, I guess that can be my trademark.
This week I felt particularly rebellious and wore just about every pattern I owned in one spunky ensemble. Pattern mixing is super hot in fashion right now, which is ironic, because mixing your patterns used to be a huge no-no. I typically say if you’re wearing two variations of the same pattern (i.e. floral on floral), make sure they’re of different scales and colors. Otherwise, feel free to put stripes with florals, polka dots with animal prints, and tribal prints with pinstripes. It shows off your fun, playful side, but also has that fearless factor. Fashion is the one thing we can have complete control over in our lives–so have fun with it.
Denim Vest, Lace Skirt, Blouse–Target(circa 2008), Animal Print Tights(Similar), Leather Booties(Similar), Topshop Lace-Trimmed Socks, Scarf–Thrifted, Belt–DIY, Satchel–Target(circa 2011), Coral Bangles–Sequin, BCBG Affirmation Bracelet, Aviators–Primark(UK only).
Hopefully I didn’t bore you too much! I’ll hopefully be doing a DIY pretty soon, so keep an eye out!
Until next time–