Friday, April 19, 2013

The notion of being a "grown up"

I remember the day, in college, when I first glimpsed at the notion that the invisible line between being a child and being an adult had always been a figment of world's collective imagination. I'd always assumed some sort of enlightenment would reign down on me so I could acquire the secret knowledge of "grown-ups" and move forward with my life, but the ridiculousness of that epiphanous assumption slapped me in the face like the hand of a disapproving mother. Since then, I've been confronted, numerous times, with the scary reality that being older doesn't really mean you're better equipped to deal with life.
The truth is,  though the world may see an adult and expect you to behave as such, you're never really a "grown up" in your own mind.  
You're always just the person you've always been with no more answers than you had before, there's no unfaltering foundation upon which to lay the confidence of your decisions, actions, knowledge, etc. 

You're just surviving, and sometimes that comes with happiness and easy decisions, but other times there's darkness and moments so difficult to navigate that you'd rather just..not. I keep finding myself slipping into unnavigable territory because being a "grown up" is too cumbersome. 
The caveat here, though, is that I'm trying to navigate this with my child when I don't have any more of an idea what the future holds than he does.  
He is struggling with a difficult situation, a situation that feels more than unfair and disgusting, and I have to be the grown up. 

We are struggling.

He needs me. I have to cross that invisible line and be the strength he needs. I am supposed to have an answer for him when he asks me why he should care about living if his life is being fucked over by his own brain. 
How does a "grown up" answer that question?
 Keeping in mind that the "grown-up" in question here is the one who made him.

I made him. 

Think about that, 

my body made this child who is being attacked by the faulty wiring in his brain, 
and now I'm supposed to tell him that it's going to be ok.

The irony is that it makes me want my own mother to cross that invisible line...I want her to be the grown up and fix it for me, so I can fix it for him.

The notion of being a "grown-up" is a fraudulent one, 

and I feel duped.

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