Monday, November 26, 2012

Two Feet

I'm twenty-five years-old.
I've graduated from college.
I'm one of those people who are married. Oy.
I work at a school.
I am an authority figure.
I have a job that has no ties to the religion I came from.
I live away from the town and state I grew up in.
I am an employee.
I am a professional.

Yet, just today, I told an acquaintance that I "just recently" graduated from college. In December. A year ago.

Much of my new world feels foreign from my old world.
I'm not a student anymore. The world I knew so well.
I'm the teacher. Which feels wrong.

Many days I walk into school forgetting this. I feel like this is just a side gig. A place I go. A thing I do.

It's like I'm waiting to be accepted simply because I'm there. I'm just a kid, after all.
It's like I'm expecting someone to "call my foul" and plop me on the other side of the desk where I belong.
It's like I'm hoping my superiors will see me for the child I am and just tell me what to do.

But no. This is my job. I'm an adult now.

When did this happen, anyway?
When did my similarly immature and irresponsible friends become physical therapists and nurses and writers and teachers? 
When did the "grown-ups" hand over the reigns and trust us with the future?

Was it a choice?
Or is it just a natural process?

It doesn't feel right.
I don't feel ready.

And as I looked at old photographs of my great-grandfather, my grandparents, and my parents, I realized, they probably didn't feel ready either, but it's just this thing we do: we grow up. We don't know what it will feel like until we're right here. No one ever has this all figured out like we think they do when we're looking up to them. Even our parents. We take on new responsibilities. We figure out the minute details of how to pay bills and feed children. Because no one ever feels prepared for this and I am no different. 

Now it's my turn to be the teacher.
To not dwell on the child I used to be.  
It's my turn to speak with authority.
To be sure of what I know.
To be confident in where I've been, what I've seen, and how I've come to stand where I do today.

On my own two feet.


Carley Brown said...

I really loved this post. It's interesting how we end up where we are and how unexpected and expected it feels all at the same time.