Growing Up Sucks, Big Time.
When I was a little fat kid who always had seconds whenever I ate meatballs (this is true, believe me), I always thought that being a high schoolgirl was cool. Like, really cool. You get to wear a dark-colored skirt for school uniform (and not the blaring red, like elementary graders uniform). You study physics, chemistry, trigonometry, and more things that sounds very complicated, as if they are can only be learned by smart people. And then you can get romance — for this one, let’s all agree to blame those incredibly cheesy fiction books.
But when I was a high schoolgirl and finally got to wear dark-colored uniform skirt, I didn’t think I become as cool as what I thought. I fucking hated trigonometry (and still do), I never truly understood the gist of physics, I also miserably failed to memorize the whole periodic table. And romance was a total bullshit to me. Suddenly, the thought of being a college student became far more interesting.
And now, after finishing my study at University of Indonesia, I looked back along the years and realized that the ‘cool version’ of myself is nowhere to be found. Being in my twenties doesn’t give the OMG-I-am-so-mature-and-wonderful feeling I got when I was a teen. Deep down, I feel like I’m still the very same person I was. Stumbling around cluelessly, cannot even walk properly, and weak towards cats.
If any, the biggest change I feel is that after getting into college, people start asking me questions. Personal questions. Questions that I don’t see any reasons to answer because mostly, my response won’t give them shit.
Let’s set some examples.
When I was in my second year of college and went to a family meeting, people asked me whether I’ve gotten myself a boyfriend or not. Yeah, sure. Because other than looking for a boyfriend, what else did I do in college? And if they weren’t asking about my relationship status, they asked how high my GPA is. Seriously. They wouldn’t bother offering me internships or job vacancies, would they?
Now after graduating (and apparently they knew I’ve got a partner in romance department), they started to ask me when I would like to get married. Good Lord. I’m in my early twenties, recently graduated, with no income and still in the middle of job-hunting. Marriage is the last thing I want to think about. Damn, I worry more about getting blisters from high heels on my way to interviews than setting a ‘deadline’ for my own marriage.
Why do they think I want to marry someone in near future? And why do they think they need to know when I would like to get married? They don’t need to know. It’s not their business anyway. If they want to engage in a conversation, why not start with something more… what, pleasant?
Growing up does suck.
I don’t remember getting such poor-quality questions when I was a kid. Not even in my teenage days. Back then, question I hated the most was “Did you do all your homework? Why are you watching TV?”, and that didn’t feel offensive at all. Not when compared to what I’m getting recently.
I ended up not showing up to family meetings (extended family meetings, that kind where you can meet your uncle’s grandchildren whose names you have no idea) just to avoid answering questions. But if I accidentally bump into one of them somewhere, I think I will stick to this plan:
Q: “When will you plan to get married?”
A: “Tomorrow. Didn’t you get the invitation? Oh, I forget. You’re not invited.”
(My father would kill me, but I really want to try saying it.)
(You understand the temptation, don’t you?)
I think it’s funny. As grown-ups, we’re supposed to be able to make our own decisions and be responsible, as in accepting the consequences that come along with our actions, wrongdoings or not. Yet in my case, I see that people are more likely to butt into someone else’s business. They become nosier, rude, and — this is what makes it ironic — less helpful.
I do not want to become that kind of an adult.
However, lawfully, I’m an adult already.