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On NOT feeling like a grownup

This month I celebrated my 47th birthday – that’s right, 47 big ones – but you know what? I still don’t feel like a grownup. Yep. I’m knock-knock-knockin’ on 50’s door – the half-century mark, a concept that sometimes makes me choke a little – yet I don’t ACTUALLY feel like a grownup.

I realized this odd phenomenon awhile back, and tried to put some of my thoughts about it into writing:

I am a responsible adult.

I have a good job, which enables me to earn money to pay my bills and put food on the table.

I have a mortgage, which provides me with the opportunity to own a lovely home.

I have a newer, fuel efficient vehicle, which allows me to get from Point A to Point B and places in between.

I am a responsible adult.

I support myself and those in my care.

I fulfill my responsibilities and am accountable for my actions.

I am a responsible adult.

So… when will I start feeling like a grownup?

100 Words by Laurel Regan (dawni), 07/09/2008

It’s a puzzling concept.

But you know what I’ve figured out?

It doesn’t matter.

That’s right – it doesn’t matter. It really, really doesn’t. As long as I’m a responsible adult, why should it matter that I don’t feel like a grownup? Why should I feel the need to apologize for or be embarrassed by it? And why on earth should I let it bother me that I don’t?

The fact is, I shouldn’t.

So because it doesn’t and I shouldn’t, I have decided to take things a step further and actually embrace my non-grownup-edness (see, I just proved it!) and even take time to celebrate it.

As a small example… after I bought my pretty new planner, I started following several Filofax fan groups on Facebook, where in some cases people were sharing photos of the various ways they’ve embellished and decorated their planner pages using coloured pens, stickers, washi tape, and so on. What a waste of time and money, chided the disapproving, “responsible adult” part of my brain. That’s really NOT very grownup. Yet at the exact same time the enthralled, non-grownup part (the part that could spend HOURS in an office supply store) was getting excited about ways that I could decorate my own planner.

It wasn’t much of a war, actually. The non-grownup part won easily. And, because of my new embracing and celebrating attitude, I feel pretty great about it.

I decided yesterday that I’d take myself out for my very first Artist Date of the year today (part of my creative resolution to work through The Artist’s Way in 2014). An Artist Date, for the unenlightened, is explained on Julia Cameron’s “The Artist’s Way” site as follows:

The Artist Date is a once-weekly, festive, solo expedition to explore something that interests you. The Artist Date need not be overtly “artistic” – think mischief more than mastery. Artist Dates fire up the imagination. They spark whimsy. They encourage play. Since art is about the play of ideas, they feed our creative work by replenishing our inner well of images and inspiration. When choosing an Artist Date, it is good to ask yourself, “what sounds fun?” — and then allow yourself to try it.

Seems to me like a shopping trip for creative planner embellishment supplies would fit that description perfectly!

So that’s what I did. I hit several dollar, office supply, craft, and stationery stores (preceded by breakfast and fueled midway with a stop for Starbucks) and purchased several inexpensive little treats to delight my inner child and stimulate my burgeoning artist:

A selection of fun sticky notes, flags, and tags…


…two eye-catching zippered cases to contain my pens and supplies…


…and a little silvertone “L” charm (along with the necessary clips and findings) to attach to the rings of my planner.


Simple and frivolous as my purchases may have been, my travels throughout the day gave me several ideas for future projects, and I was left at the end of it all with a renewed sense of creative energy.

So here’s to NOT feeling like a grownup… and – more importantly – to embracing and celebrating the fact!

Do YOU feel like a grownup?
Please share!

NaBloPoMo January 2014

Ultimate Blog Challenge

Laurel Storey, CZT – Certified Zentangle Teacher. Writer, reader, tangler, iPhoneographer, cat herder, learner of French and Italian, crocheter, needle felter, on-and-off politics junkie, 80s music trivia freak, ongoing work in progress.

{ 24 comments… add one }
  • Dr Wixy
    January 18, 2014

    Being a grownup is overrated. Being responsible is really all that matters.
    Love the pretty planner.
    Dr Wixy recently posted… School FinancesMy Profile

  • katherine bartlett January 18, 2014

    I still watch cartoons on my own without my daughter. I don’t want to grow up!

  • Jane Ann McLachlan January 18, 2014

    Sounds like a fun, creative artist’s date to me!

  • Life Breath Present January 19, 2014

    Looking forward to seeing how you embellish your new planner.

    I may or may not have been recently videoed stepping on bubble wrap, laughing as if I were 2!

    Who cares about feeling like a grown-up. Sometimes we do grown-up things, others not.
    Life Breath Present recently posted… I’m a Superstar Blogger!My Profile

  • Carol Graham
    January 19, 2014

    This may sound really weird, but the older I am getting, the younger I am feeling. Last year I launched my memoir and all the years it took to write it were therapeutic — some good, some not so good, but all necessary. Rehashing through all the pain, made me realize how much I learned and how strong I have become. Upon releasing my memoir came a whole new world — social media/marketing/networking. Wow — now I am starting to really live — a whole new world and feeling younger all the time. Turning 66 this year and feeling 35. So, saying all that to say this….I believe it is all relative. I hope I never grow up — having too much fun being young.
    Carol Graham recently posted… Can You Say ‘No’ To Those Soft Brown Eyes?My Profile

  • Karen Lynn January 19, 2014

    you and Denise are making me covet filofax! however, I refrained, and instead got just a planner… and hopefully it will help me. you know what I thought of right away when I read about Artist Date? Grab the camera and go find some beauty Karen. But it’s 20 degrees. and snowy. and that ain’t going to happen. Yesterday I had such a good time pasting things into my SMASH book (Denise) and you are right, who wants to grow up?
    Karen Lynn recently posted… And The Decorating Is Almost DoneMy Profile

  • Jennifer Steck
    January 19, 2014

    Non-grownup-edness kind of sounds like your highness. Seems like an office we should all seek to attain. I worked my way through the Artist’s Way years ago and loved every minute. Your post really resonated with me and made me laugh. At 55, I was in the office supply store giggling as I purchased pens and markers of all colors yesterday. Life is too short to write and draw in only black and blue.
    Jennifer Steck recently posted… Santa Claus Has A Present for Peyton ManningMy Profile

  • ElaineLK January 19, 2014

    I’m sixty-three and I don’t feel like a grownup yet, either. I sometimes think not having had children makes me feel younger than I am! But I’m getting near conventional retirement age and I’m still thinking about the next step in my career, or even making some changes in my career. (It does help that I have my own business.) I think our generation is the first one that has redefined aging and what it means. I know I never want to stop learning! I love your “artist’s date” and the beautiful supplies you bought. Have to start thinking about doing something like that myself.

  • Lissa Johnston January 19, 2014

    I feel like I have been the same emotional age most of my life. When I was young, I always felt older or more mature than my peers. As others have mentioned, now that I am older, I def feel younger mentally than my biological age. So maybe the mental set point has stayed the same when nothing else has 🙂 Glad to see others share my office supply crush. Love the brightly colored arrow stickies, the pencil bags, and of course the ‘L’!

  • Winnie January 19, 2014

    I am 47 until July, and then I will be 48. I had the realization I will be fifty soon recently and was feeling wacked about it. But it sure beats the alternative and I am smiling as I don’t think of myself as being 47. I think it is my crafting and all my inky fingers, I don’t think I ever outgrew finger painting!

  • anexpatinuk
    January 20, 2014

    Happy Belated Birthday! Good for you not feeling your age, it’s more fun that way being able to relax about it and not stress too much.
    I also really love buying new stationery supplies, makes me happy somehow 🙂
    anexpatinuk recently posted… Between GenerationsMy Profile

  • Adela January 20, 2014

    Interesting. In the words of my mom: “You were 30 when you were eight years old.” It’s true. That being said, a grown up can love to be child-like. I do. I really do. Crayolas on my desk, blowing bubbles in the snow, and pretending I know what lurks inside a squirrel’s head. You know, I was once a little girl.
    Adela recently posted… Once I Was Bad (Maybe More than Once)My Profile


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