Listen… there is a truth that no one really explained to me when I was little. Or maybe, I just didn’t want to listen, that’s 100% possible. I guess, in hindsight, I thought adults had this vault of goodness that they wanted to keep away from children, as if the game involved a magical key that they threw to one another, away from me. It’s a myth. All of it. The truth is: ADULTING IS HARD. Growing up is distinctly differently from growing wider (which I have done), and growing older (which we all do).
This weekend, I had the distinct honor and privilege of vending with my mother. Insert catchy instrumental tune, “She get it from her momma”. While there, people bought stuff, yay! That’s good news. However, the things that are even more important are the hugs, hands shook, and people that touched me. Not in the creepy, call the police way, but in the proverbial sense. One that resonates with me is an author that I will name later. She gave me her elevator speech about her published pieces, moving the writer to author-status, but we then transitioned to how I related to her. I’m a writer. Technically, I am an author. As much as I don’t chronicle appropriately, I have been published in at least two anthologies of poetry, I have published my own book of poetry – thanks to my editor and friend Ebony, and I am even a published author of a scholarly peer-reviewed-article. So, I qualify for the word author, however, I normally stick to writer. I blog, right? J Once I realized that the conversation had shifted because as an author I related to her, I’d tattled on myself. She has also published an anthology, that I am excited about picking up. She expressed the desire to publish more, and this is where the footing slipped for me. This particular author, who holds a Juris Doctorate, is a mother, and clearly and author, wasn’t accepting my “I don’t have time”. In my defense, technically I don’t. There are at least five things that demand 100% of my time, currently. If you do the math, it’s humanly impossible. But with God…
I agreed to send her a “chapter” from an unfinished project that I have stored on my laptop. I actually started the project in 2008 or 2009 and then stumbled across it a year or two ago. I vowed to finish it, and still plan to, but the way this doctorate program of mine is set up. I no longer have the same creative mind. The voice in the files, compiled for the book, is now different. I have spent the last seven years, and two programs, attempting to write academically. Stifling the figurative language laced flowery writing that I love so much. I dare say that my voice is still present in my blogs, but the point is, it’s still different. The other glaring reason the voice is different is because I am different. The one who spoke in poetry, in a regular conversation, isn’t quite in love like she once was. While I have decided to operate in love, because He first loved me, isn’t in the same place. I now realize that love serves many purposes in life. I don’t know that I will ever “sound” like her again.
I had to grow up. Insert frown. Adulting. Has anyone coined that term officially yet? I’d pay for that. It get’s real out here. Authentic. Working to pay bills, so one day I can live without worrying. Investing in myself by achieving. Serving, because that’s why I am in the position I am in, my purpose is serving others. Walking out my own salvation and having plenty of conversations with Christ along the way. Like, “Lord really? You want me where now”. My real life journey has encountered things I wish came with redo’s or rebates, but I am grateful for each breath I take.
Talking to that author, and engaging books, reminds me that there is much left to do. But, let’s be honest about this adulating thing as we encounter young people. We can make no excuses, because they don’t matter. We have to keep living. The alternative is to start dying, and I am not signing up for that class. Yes, one can argue that we start dying after the first breath. However, I am not living to die. I am living to live. Each and every day and night gifted to me comes with responsibility. It comes with possibility. It morphs perspective. And I guess I am finally seeing that although it’s hard, this adulting thing may indeed have privileges. Maybe I’ve finally caught the key.
More on the author later…