Dear 100 Hour Board,
Since I turned 18 and officially became an adult until just recently I've always felt like an imposter. I know I'm not alone in feeling this way, like I'm a kid who for some reason is allowed to make my own decisions. But after graduation and spending a few years in the workforce I feel less and less like a fake adult. I'm sure it'll hit me even more when I get married or when I buy a house. At what point in your life did you start to feel like a real adult?
I used to think adults knew a lot, but it turns out that they don't. So now it feels like no one is really an adult.
I think I started feeling pretty adult-ish once I came to BYU, but definitely when I got back from my mission. That said, a major reason for going to grad school was that I didn't feel ready to have a grown-up job.
I used to associate adulthood with high qualifications, and knowing what you're doing. However, the older I get, the more I realize that people are constantly experiencing a steep learning curve; we're all muddling around the best we can.
I don't know if I feel like an adult or not. However, considering there's never some super enlightening moment where people suddenly understand how to perfectly live life, I don't think there will ever be a single defining moment where I can then say I'm an adult.
Dealing with financial stuff on my own was a crucial factor in helping me feel like an adult. In my last semester of college, I bought a used car, which was a stressful and complicated process. But the biggest clincher in my sense of adulthood was that I managed to qualify for a car loan without my parents cosigning. Knowing that an established financial institution considered me responsible enough to loan me such a large sum made me feel old in a good way.
I also feel more like an adult when I make decisions that my parents don't agree with. I'm not doing anything too crazy, but they aren't 100% on board with my dream of a career with Disney. In recent years, their hesitance would have been a big deal to me, and would have made me doubt my choices. But as a college graduate, I feel able to make my own decisions regarding my employment, even if they aren't the choices other people would make.
I feel most like an adult when the hotdog guy gives me a free hotdog and then I throw it on the ground while yelling that he can't buy me.