Friday, February 28, 2014

Finish The Sentence Friday: The Most Unexpected Part Of Being A Grownup

Finish the Sentence Friday

The most unexpected part of being a grownup is...

Who would have thought, back when I couldn't wait to turn 21, that being a grown up would be so tough?  And who would have expected that the toughest part for me was being alone? I mean, I've always been an introvert, and enjoyed my alone time, so wouldn't you think that having more of that, once I moved out on my own, would have been a good thing?

That's not what happened, though. I discovered very quickly, after my college graduation and move into my own apartment, that there is a huge difference between being alone and being lonely.  Living alone, in a town where I really didn't know anyone yet, was a very lonely situation. I'd come home from a day spent with five year olds,ready for some adult conversation, and spend the afternoon and evening on my own, watching a lot of television.

Did I mention that I don't make friends easily? I tend to wait for people to approach me, rather than being the one to make the first move. That just added to the loneliness and isolation I was feeling. I couldn't wait for Friday afternoons, when I made the ninety minute drive home to be with my family...and began to dread Sunday afternoons when I headed back "home" to that empty apartment.

The situation got so difficult for me that I wound up leaving my full time position there, moving back to my hometown to work as a substitute teacher for a year before getting married and having my son. Two years later we moved to Germany with the Air Force, and I went through the loneliness and isolation feeling again, along with a difficult pregnancy, as my husband was away for a week or two at a time, almost every month. I honestly believe those 2 1/2 yrs were a contributing factor to the break up of our marriage.

Since then, I have made an effort not to let myself get into that situation again. I have a small core group of friends, people I stay in contact with on a weekly basis, as well as family members I talk to several times a week, and internet friends I talk to almost every day. If I would have had access to the internet back then, I am sure it would have made my life a little better....first world problems of a girl who graduated college in 1980, I suppose.   :)


  1. I too remember just wanting to grow up and couldn't wait to turn 21, but now when I think back I ask myself constantly why I was in such a rush. Seriously, I had it made when I was younger and as much as I love my life now wish I would have just slowed down a bit on the growing up part, too.

  2. I'm a bit of an introvert too, and yes, having a social life online really makes a difference! I love my time alone, but now I also appreciate family and friends more. #FTSF

  3. That sounds very much like me! I keep very much to myself and as outgoing as I am once I get to know you, I'm rarely the one to spark things. I think you're wrong about one thing though - the internet. I think if it was around back then, you wouldn't have as many "real" friendships as you do now because you would already be used to having that wall between you and other people. So maybe it's a good thing ... for both of us ... that we're as old as we are. I don't have many friends where I live currently, as my "besties" are scattered around the country.

  4. I had a similar time being very lonely when I first moved to the DC area. I didn't know anybody but my boss, and spent so much time just watching tv. I wish I had those hours back now! So glad that you've found a core group of friends and the internet, too!!!


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