*PHOTO CREDIT FRONT + MAIN
Alright. We have already established that being an adult is hard here and here. But maybe by writing about it and talking about it, we can help each other out. Sure, there’s no substitute for the trial and error method of learning. I’m hoping, however, that by sharing some of our best practices, it can help someone else find theirs.
Adult Advice #1: Make Your Bed Immediately When You Get Out of Bed
You learned that in third grade? Good for you. I just learned that seven days ago. So why am I offering up advice that most of us have had ingrained in us since we were old enough to have our own beds?
I had the opportunity to attend a cello performance recently. It was incredible! The cellist played everything from Mozart to Daft Punk. I have always adored the cello and the sounds it makes. It is quite possibly the most underrated string instrument. That is not the point of this story though.
During the performance, I noticed a group of young girls. They were probably 7 or 8 years old at the most. One girl in particular was really getting into the music. She started clapping her hands wildly to the beat as the cellist played a particularly festive song. She had her eyes closed very tight as she absorbed the music.
And then suddenly, her eyes fluttered open. Her body slowed down as she gradually resigned her clapping and brought her hands to her lap. Her eyes darted to the left and saw the other girls, her peers, sitting stoically with blank looks in their eyes. She stayed in that position throughout the rest of the performance. I would catch glimpses of her shooting a quick look to see if any of the other girls had started to enjoy the music. But they didn’t, and it stopped her from enjoying it too.
Every day, I spend about an hour and ten minutes commuting to and from work. That’s quite a bit of time spent driving. That’s 350 minutes a week, 24 hours a month, or approximately 12 days a year. Wait, did I do that math right?!
I have a variety of methods to keep myself entertained. If I’ve had a particularly long day at work, I find a playlist on Spotify that I can sing my heart out to. The public library has supplied me with a collection of audio books. And NPR is my best friend.
Our whole lives, we are constantly being compared to others. When you are an infant, your weight and height are compared against a chart of what is normal and expected. When you are a student, your grades are compared to the rest of the student body. So of course, it follows you as you grow up into a full-fledged adult.
“Who got what job?”
“So and so is getting married!”
“Their home is an amazing neighborhood.”
“Can she even have kids?”
I’ve been contemplating over this post ever since Allie wrote hers. Immediately, the word “invest” came to mind. But I thought, how boring! I quickly put “invest” out of my head and came up with cooler words like “hustle” or “sharp”. I tried to think about how those words could shape my life in 2016. They are not bad words, but I just kept coming back to my first word. So, I am going with my gut.
“Invest” seems like a word that doesn’t exist in the vocabulary of children. In your youth, others are constantly investing in you and your future (parents, family, teachers) whether you are aware of it or not. But what happens when you get to the future? This next bit I say with the utmost love and respect for my fellow adults, and I must add that I have a loving support group of family and friends. BUT! When you get to the future and you become an adult, there’s really not the same level of investment from others. You have to do the heavy lifting and learn how to take care of yourself.
The biggest perk about working on this blog together, is getting to spend more time with Allie and Kendall albeit virtually. It has been fun getting to know them in a more creative capacity. They are both truly talented, and I can’t wait for you to hear more of their voices. But first, we’ll put into words how we see each other.
We’ve shared laughs and tears, wine and whiskey, jokes and advice. She is the girl you want to have in your corner. I would like to introduce you to my dear friend, Allie.
“I love to listen to Allie talk. When she gets going on a topic she is passionate about, it’s hard not to get swept up in her excitement. At the same time, she is an amazing listener. She wants to hear about what you think and keeps an open mind to everyone’s opinions. She is incredibly thoughtful and wants to make sure that every voice is heard. Allie is who I look to when I need good music. Her Spotify playlists often fill my workdays and weekends. She is definitely a master curator of moods when it comes to music!”
“Allie is deep and passionate. Listening to her talk can be so inspiring as her hands get going and her voice brightens. I always want to hear her opinion on topics. She has many hidden talents and not so hidden hobbies (reading, writing, music, dance… what else Allie?!). Allie can also go from deep to childish in less than five seconds as she pulls up the latest YouTube video or gif that has her girlish laugh going over and over again.”
Pen & Paper Society. It took a while to get here, but here we are. Why the name? Are we a secret society devoted to selling writing utensils? No. The name of our blog reflects our love of writing, but it also goes beyond that. It means taking action. The name is our pact to do what we say we want, dream, yearn to do. Take that painting class. Volunteer in the community. Go on that dream vacation to Paris with two of your friends. Oh wait! Check that last one off the list.