Anonymous of Holland            -A Dutchman in Korea-

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I thought I’d have some answers by now

A couple of weeks ago, my father celebrated his 60th birthday.
60.
That’s a lot of years.
That’s an amount of years that you can’t even imagine when you’re young. When all the scary kids are ’18’ and all adults are ’30’.
‘Old as fuck’, is what I called him in my congratulatory text message on the day.

And then I realized I was half of that.
I’m turning 30 today.
30.
That’s a lot of years.
You could even say that’s about halfway to ‘old as fuck’.
My father was 30 when he had me.
He had a house, a car, a wife. A stable job and plan for the future.
Meanwhile, I refused to grow up; ran away to a far away country with nothing but a vague plan and a sizeable debt.

I’m not sure what 30 is supposed to feel like, but I don’t feel like 30.
Physically maybe, yeah, sure, I could be 45. But not mentally. At 30, you’re supposed to be an adult. You’re supposed to have things figured out. 30, to me, was always objectively the moment where I’d have gotten all my shit together and would be well on my way to living that life that I had envisioned back when I was a teenager. Maybe without all the purple satin, but still.
30 was supposed to be a big deal. But just like how 20 was supposed to be a big deal, it doesn’t feel like much has changed. The strange thing is that when I pause for a moment and think about it, it feels wrong. A 30 year old should not still be in university, renting a one room apartment (but with a separate kitchen!!), worrying about making end’s meet and being obsessed with video games and comic books. That doesn’t sound at all like what 18-year-old Richard imagined when he thought of future Richard. Adult Richard. Two kids and a dog Richard.
But on a day to day basis…it doesn’t feel wrong. This is me. This is who I am. I am the kind of person who stays up until 4 in the morning to play the Telltale Game of Thrones game after coming back from a wonderful date the day after drinking soju and making childish jokes with friends over fried chicken eaten from a urinal-shaped plate. It doesn’t match with my idea of what a 30 year old should be at all, but it is who I am.

So I’ve been revising my theory. Maybe adulthood isn’t something that just happens somewhere overnight, the little adulthood-fairy sneaking in through the cracks in your windowsill, touching you between the eyes with her magic wand and transforming you into what you always knew you would become.
Maybe adulthood is something that just…happens. Slowly. Without you even noticing it.
I’ve been noticing things a lot these days. Living in Korea has made me exceedingly aware of who I am and what I do. How I deal with things and how I wish I’d deal with things. I noticed that even in the short time that I’ve been here, I’ve matured a lot. I’d always thought you would be all matured-out by this age, but that’s not true at all. I gained a deeper understanding and appreciation of friendship, realized my flaws in the areas that are important to me, came to terms with my dependency on others for my own personal happiness and became aware of the ways in which my own thinking influences my life.

But in the end, I guess that 30 isn’t that big of a deal after all.
Just like when I turned 20, no sudden, profound changes took place.
I’m still me as much as I was a week, a month, a year or two years ago.
But just like how 30 year old me is so completely different from 20 year old me,
I expect that some day I’ll just wake up, think about who I’ve become and realize that, at last,
I have become an adult.

I’m in no rush to see that day.
But I did think I’d have some answers by now.

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3 comments on “I thought I’d have some answers by now

  1. Ghislaine
    25 April 2017

    Dit is echt zoooo herkenbaar. Zo Ik ik me rond mn verjaardag ook. Maar adulting is stom.

  2. phoebesummers
    25 April 2017

    Hahaha precies mijn gevoel toen ik 30 werd… 24 dagen geleden… Omg ik ben 30 jaar en 24 dagen. Noooo. Laat ik het zo zeggen, het went. 30 is gewoon any other number.

  3. Marcel Luijten
    30 April 2017

    But someday you have to growup and see, your driving a Mercedes benz car.
    Haha……

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This entry was posted on 25 April 2017 by in Diary and tagged , , , , , .

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