I woke up this morning on the childish side of the bed.
The side of the bed where I wish that someone else had to clean the bathroom, wash the dishes, work for a living, plan the vacations, make decisions about my life.
I was always independent – dressing myself at age three, running a babysitting cartel at 11, off to Africa at 16.
And I’m good at planning things, organizing things, getting things done.
But today, I want to be bad at those things. I want to be a child again, where the biggest decision was whether to wear my favorite pink skirt again or try something new.
No wonder I love television so much – I can escape from my adult life into one-hour time blocks where nothing is required of me but to be entertained.
That’s the hardest part about adulthood – the heartbreaking realization somewhere between your first job and your first failure, that you are now responsible. That no one is (or should be) coming along to rescue you. The world is yours for the taking, and the messing up in.
Marriage isn’t an escape pod either. I haven’t wed Superman. (Although, despite his awesome acrobatics and sweet altruism, I bet he’d be a handful as a husband: Honey, where’s my extra pair of glasses? Sorry, dear, I have to cancel tonight, I’ve got a city to save. Can’t you do the grocery shopping? I’m terrible at menu planning – on Krypton, we ate little green pills.)
Marriage is a funny mix of letting go of one’s independence, while committing yourself to actively furthering and shaping its happiness. Relying on someone means that they rely on you. Making decisions together means you have at least half of the responsibility. “Making a life together” is an active phrase, that requires loving contribution.
And it also means that things that used to only affect me personally, now affect someone else as well. Pouting my way through today and being totally ineffectual would be easier, if I wasn’t married.
That’s the other bitter truth about adulthood: easier is not always better, or sweeter in the end. I shiver to think what ‘easier’ has led me into. Convienience and true love live in different countries.
So, for the sake of my beloved other, I’ll gladly stop pouting. I’m still going to wear that pink skirt, though, for one more day.