As a child, my parents always called me an old soul. I still played Barbies and dress-up in my mother’s vintage clothes, but I also questioned the meaning of life and thought way too much about my own mortality. I was a strange kid, I guess. I still do those things, by the way. At some point in my teens, I started to really look forward to being in my thirties.

Thirties must be great, I told myself. I would have everything figured out by then. Things in my life would make sense, I would have a secure relationship, career, and so on. Maybe even own a house! I would definitely have it figured out by thirty.

It sounded good at the time, but I think if I had it all figured out, at thirteen or thirty, life would be quite boring. It’s all a social construct—childhood and adulthood. The truth is, you can be any kind of adult you want to be. The decision making power that comes with age and maturity means: I can eat ice cream out of a wine glass. Mac and cheese is a nutritional enough dinner when loaded with enough veggies (and also pairs exceptionally well with desert scenery and starlight). And most importantly, I can still sleep in the dirt and wake up to beautiful places.

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Cover photograph courtesy of Mandy Barbee

5 thoughts

  1. no…boring grownups don’t sleep in cars! the fun ones, they know where it’s at + sleeping in cars = more roaming, more exploring + more sleeping in [when you don’t have to drive to a trailhead in the AM since you arrived the night before!] 🙂

  2. You just put into eloquent words what I’ve been trying to wrap my head around for the last year. Thank you. Here’s to embracing exactly who we are – outside of any social construct, expectation or assumption – and to celebrating everything we possibly could be. xx

  3. You just put into eloquent words what I’ve been trying to wrap my head around for the last year. Thank you. Here’s to embracing exactly who we are – outside of any social construct, expectation or assumption – and to celebrating everything we possibly could be. xx

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