Adulting Is Hard

(Portrait of two self-employed parents with a shortage of house elves.)

I always feel like I need a machete coming back to this space after a break. The jungle of online content is so relentless in its growth, so gleefully fecund, that I have the sense of being swallowed up if I don’t constantly maintain my little clearing. Three months of silence, and I need GPS and a sharp-bladed resolve to find my way back.

Hi, by the way!

2015 ended before I really got my bearings in it, which has left me blundering around 2016 like a first-day intern whose supervisor has called in sick. I’ve been working alongside Dan for the past several months—I do the bookkeeping, the list-making, and the English-languaging while he does the other 3,017 things that keep a startup afloat—and I generally love it. We make a good team (when we’re not on each other’s nerves for the very differences that make us a good team). Being a grownup is not easy, however, when you have a household to run and business contracts to puzzle through and no real idea of where the previous year went. It’s been easier to avoid the blogosphere and social media than to risk bumping into myself here.

Also, allergy season has begun, which means I’m 90% drugged-out zombie, 10% flea-bitten spastic, and 0% productive member of society. My blog archives are already well stocked with descriptions of my seasonal allergies, so I’ll say no more about it and simply leave you with this dazzling self-portrait from 2012:

Self-portrait with allergies

(Just imagine a pixie haircut and slightly more bloodshot eyes.) 

We have a lot of decisions on our plate these days, not the least of which is where to sign Natalie up for junior high (!!). There are other Where? questions too, lingering in front of our eyes like tinted lenses. I don’t want to be responsible for the organization of our “one wild and precious life.” I don’t want to have to weigh the hard decisions in my own hands. Can’t I just take a sabbatical from adulting? When do the substitute grownups arrive?

When our girls were very small, they adored the book We’re Going On A Bear Hunt and would chant the refrain on every other page along with me:

“We can’t go over it.
We can’t go under it.
Oh no!
We’ve got to go through it!”

That’s basically where I find myself these days, wandering straight into decisions that can’t be outmaneuvered no matter how earnestly I protest that I’m just the intern and surely someone else is better equipped for them. I can still hear Sophie’s toddler voice singing, “We’ve got to go FREW it!” and blast it all, she’s right. The big decisions and the allergy seasons and the machete-chopping back to this space… My inevitable route is straight down the middle.

Still, it doesn’t necessarily mean I have to be mature about it.

Catching snowflakes

(Snowflakes for lunch during a short January getaway to Lake Bled. Trips like this help us remember why in absolute tarnation we hopped on the insanitycoaster of self-employment.)

How are you all? Is the new year being good to you? I do believe we’re overdue on catching up.

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  1. So good to hear from you!! January was madness for me too – allergies, yep, exhaustion, yep, self-employment crazy – yep. Wishing you rest and relief from your allergies and time to collect your thoughts. xo

    • Pretty much every time I hear from you, I think how unjust it is that we can’t be next-door neighbors… and not just because you almost certainly have some delicious home remedy options for my allergies. 🙂

  2. January in Texas… sigh. Not much a winter this year and I still caught a cold. Gave it to my 22 yr old cat too. She’s fine now. Me? Not so much.

    Isn’t Bled lovely? We were there with Vlado Kreslin a couple of years ago when I was still working on the book, and I fell in love with it. It was in August, and it must be even lovelier in the snow! It looks like you all are having a blast!

    • Bled must have been a magical place to write a book! We were only there for three days, and we didn’t really feel like paddling out to the island in the cold, so I’m thinking a return trip is in order. 🙂

  3. It was! We were there for Vlado’s concert, and it was one of the last times in Slovenia before we went into edits.
    Paddling out to the island– 🙂 Rick has a friend who swam out to the island in winter. Jijiji! I don’t know how he did it.

  4. Happy to see your sweet (even though allergy bleared) face and read your words. I, too, am trying to get back at it. And I still have moments when I dearly wish the Real Adults would show up and take charge, dangitallanyway!!

  5. I like hearing from you. Hang in there! I’m sure the real adults are coming.

  6. It’s great seeing a post from you in my inbox again. You’re my taste of Italy. This line wins the award for best sentence I’ve read today: 2015 ended before I really got my bearings in it, which has left me blundering around 2016 like a first-day intern whose supervisor has called in sick.

  7. Oh! HI! I haven’t written since August. I am a terrible blogger. I have a cold. I am buried in paperwork. I am taking a grammar class from hell. I think I need a taxi-cab key chain. And I had some sadness in the fall…my dad past away. Surviving still, but tired. Summer is on its way! (I realize it is February right now.) It is so nice to read your wonderful words, here. It was a bright spot in my day today to see a new post! I REALLY REALLY wish the house elves would show up already. I have been waiting SO LONG for the m to arrive. Irritating.

    Sending LOVE and HUGS and allergy relief to you…as well as clarity for all those stupid ADULT decisions that keep creeping into existence. SO wonderful to hear from you!

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