Can we talk about the “real world”? The hellish jungle of utility bills, laundry piles, and responsibility that our parents always warned us about, I mean. The one that everyone promised would be one revelation after another; an endless stream of payments, chores, and disillusionment. The one which we were told to ‘just wait’ for.
Well, I did my waiting.
Twelve years of it.
Here’s what didn’t happen:
1 – Bills, bills, bills
As I type this, there is an unpaid internet bill sitting on top of my microwave. Soon I will have to write out a cheque, put it in the prepaid envelope with my payment stub, and send it back by mail, hoping that Canada Post delivers it before next Christmas. This will be a monthly chore, sending cheques to my many creditors on a revolving schedule of wasted paper and self-hatred.
Only not, because it’s 2015, so I’m just going to sign up for pre-authorized debit like a normal person.
2 – I cracked under the pressure of the unspecific ‘responsibility’
Ah, responsibility: The ability to take your life into your own hands, earn an income, manage your funds, and take care of your health.
What an awful, awful, thing.
3 – I didn’t clean and then my house got full of rats and then burned down in a chemical explosion
Actually, we got some fruit flies. They’re all right, I guess.
Look, when you’re fresh out of student housing, and you can still remember finding bugs living IN YOUR CUTLERY DRAWER and the time those people left a moldy coffee maker on the counter for 4 months and the bathrooms that got cleaned never… trust me, we know exactly how bad a house can get. And we know a little untidiness isn’t going to kill us.
4 – I survived on instant noodles and instant coffee
You know what’s cheaper than a drip coffee maker? A French press. Now, you need a kettle to use it, but we already have those to make our instant noodles with!
Kidding. Vegetarians have to be more creative than instant noodles in order to not die of malnourishment, and we are more than capable of figuring it out, one failed meal at a time. Learning to cook = trial by literal fire.
5 – I grocery shopped at the corner store (and my list consisted of redbull and salt and vinegar chips)
Grocery stores are not a foreign planet to me – I’ve been a begrudging guest to many shopping trips with my parents before. It’s not so hard.
Now, planning to actually eat what you buy – or actually putting your food in the fridge – that’s the hard part. erm, we should get to that at some point.
6 – My life spiralled out of control
With no authority to watch over me, I spent all my free time doing various activities that I enjoy (watching Netflix, reading, writing, what have you), and the consequences were… absolutely nothing.
7 – I slept in every single morning and never once made it to work
Okay, I suck at getting up in the morning. Don’t get me wrong.
But by no means did I start to suck even more when I moved out. Now, instead of my mom waking me up for school, my own sense of panic kicks in when I realize that I’ve shut off all six of my alarms and I may not have time to finish my cup of coffee before 8:00 which is when I have exactly 25 minutes to get ready and get out the door so I can make it to work exactly 3 minutes late.
Somehow I’ve managed.
8 – I spent all my time slaving away over household chores and never got to sit down and watch TV
Sometimes we skip the dishes. Sometimes there’s garbage all over the house. Other times we do everything. Let’s find a balance.
But that’s not why we don’t watch TV – it’s because we can’t afford cable. Oh well.
9 – I gained 1,200 pounds OH GOD NO
Nope. My weight has not changed, and neither has my lifelong commitment to body positivity, so please go away.
10 – I moped about high school and university being over because they were the best years of my life
11 – I lost touch with every friend I ever had
Now they keep talking to me on Facebook chat and stuff and I have to maintain all these relationships even though I really just want to sit on the couch by myself and watch Avatar again on Netflix. GOD. People are so demanding.
12 – I immediately spent all my money on something ridiculous
I mean, it’s hard to blow all your money on an impulse buy when you’re doing an unpaid internship and all your bills are coming out of your bank account automatically.
I crowd-sourced ideas for this from my Young Adult kin and former classmates, the book nerd and the baking nerd. Here’s to us not having lost touch yet.
And erm, do let me know if you think I missed anything.
Until next time,