An attempt at 'adulting'

Hannah Swayze • Apr 8, 2018 at 8:15 AM

At what point is one considered an adult?

No, really, this is not a hypothetical question.

I am 22 years old and a senior at East Tennessee State University. I live in Kingsport and go to school part time while working here at the Johnson City Press. My life, like that of many young people my age, is in a state of flux.

To be fair, I'm sure everyone in college feels like they're in limbo a little bit. One year you are living at home with your parents, with none of the adult worries that make the moms in sitcoms pull out a bottle of wine after work.

But then one day, you graduate high school. You say goodbye to your friends, eager or nervous to start the next chapter of your life, and you're on your own.

Suddenly, there is no one to wash the dishes you sneak into the sink without washing them.

The world gets a lot harder in a lot of small ways. It requires a lot of coffee. This is one of the many problems that you have so many questions about.

On top of that, the longer you stay in this stage of life, the longer you start to wonder: Am I falling behind?

But the beautiful thing about this stage of life, despite its share of struggles, is that between the constant decisions and pressure to make choices is that beautiful thing called opportunity.

I'm not saying this is everyone's experience. Heck, not everyone even goes to college. Some people have a wonderful amount of  success just striking out on their own.

But at some point, everyone reaches that time when they're on their own and they get that brand-new feeling of independence.

If I've learned anything, it's that, whether you're in college, you've just graduated, a new mom or a grandmother, we're all just trying to get by. We're all learning how to do things we've never done before and we all have room to grow.

You're never "ahead" or "behind." You're always exactly where you need to be.

Hannah Swayze is a graduating senior at East Tennessee State University and a staff writer at Johnson City Press. Reach her at [email protected]

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