Everybody Knows, it Hurts to Grow Up

 “One day down, infinity to go”, that is what I said to my sister on the train ride home after my first day on the job. Unlike school, working doesn’t have an end date. Don’t get me wrong I like my job, but it looks like my company doesn’t observe Columbus Day, Flag Day, or Summer Vacation. This could be a problem. I guess at least us women have maternity leave to look forward to. Sorry boyz. 

It has been almost a year now since I graduated college. In that year I have been forced to begin to grow up, and let me tell you, it’s not easy. There have been many obstacles and hardships along the way. Joining the workforce comes with its own set of challenges. Two of those challenges I encounter on my walk to and from the train: Pigeons and slow walkers. They are both equally annoying and I feel like giving both parties a good kick in the rear to get the lead out of their pants. Many days I want to scream, “Get out of my way stupid pigeons! Not all of us have the luxury of flying everywhere they go! Some of us have a train to catch!” But I know if I said this I would look like a crazy person, so I have refrained from yelling this thus far.
Another challenge-picking out an outfit each morning. For me, the bottom part is easy because I pretty much own just two pairs of nice pants, a grey pair and a black pair. I rotate the pants every week-Monday, Wednesday, and Friday are grey pants day, while Tuesday and Thursday are black pants day. I wear the grey pants an extra day because they are comfier than the black pair. But picking out a top is like trying to solve a math problem. “Ok today I’ll wear the striped sweater. Wait I can’t wear stripes, I wore a striped shirt Tuesday and I can’t wear stripes two times in one week. Ok I’ll wear this blue shirt. Wait I wore that at the beginning of March what if people remember?!”
Yet another challenge-Lunch. Lunch can make your day a good one or a bad one. If I have a bad lunch I have nothing to look forward to in the mornings. If it were up to me I would eat salsa and chips each day for lunch but that’s not socially acceptable in the workplace so I usually settle for a sandwich. Sometimes I’ll make myself a salad. By that I mean I put iceburg lettuce in a Tupperware container and douse it will ranch dressing. Salad days=bad days. I’m sorry but salads just don’t keep me full and satisfied. I’m not a bunny.

In working I have learned that you can’t come into the office without watching the weather on the news, otherwise you will have nothing to talk about. Thank goodness for the Polar Vortex this winter. It really provided me with a good “ice-breaker” (pun definitely intended on that one) in starting conversation with my new coworkers. Some of my favorite go-to phrases include, “Cold enough out there for ya? (chuckle)” and “I think we may only have one season this year-Winter! (another chuckle)” But the Polar Vortex did come with its disadvantages. You see, everyone who knows me well knows I get cold very easily, thus my lips and nails turn purple. When your lips are purple, people ask questions like “Do you have purple lip gloss on?” Many times I’ve had to stop myself from saying “No I don’t have purple lip gloss on! This is not 1998 and I’m not a spice girl!” Luckily my office doesn’t keep the thermostat as low as my father does so I have been able to avoid this awkward encounter.
I have also learned about things I never wanted to know about. 401K? More like 4-0h Hell no! You’re going to take money out of my check and put it into an account that I can’t touch until I’m 59?! I could be dead by then, I don’t take a daily multi-vitamin! And tax day? When I was little tax day meant hamburgers at McDonald’s were 39 cents and cheeseburgers were 49 cents. Now I actually have to do my taxes. So upsetting.
In a way though, a part of me will never grow up. At least while I’m still living with my parents. I mean our upstairs bathroom has hippo wallpaper covering it. We all love this wallpaper so it will never come down.
"It's probably just water weight...right?'

“It’s probably just water weight…right? and my slippers add a few pounds.”

Pictured above is a hippo from our bathroom wall. I like to call her “College Girl Hippo” Maybe she had a little too much fun going out celebrating that Physics test she aced. Maybe she ordered a late night pizza because she got a little hungry after the bars. Now its Sunday, she’s feeling guilty, she steps on the scale to see how much damage she did, and she doesn’t like that number she sees. Now that I’m a college grad, older, wiser, and more mature, I want to tell her “Oh honey we’ve all been there, just have fun and enjoy your college years. You’re more than just a number on a scale!”
This Mama Hippo (center) is thinking what I'm sure my own mother has thought numerous times, "Why the hell did I have all these kids for?!"

This Mama Hippo (center) is thinking what I’m sure my own mother has thought numerous times, “Why in the hell did I have all these kids?!”

In addition to our childlike wallpaper, I still have glow in the dark stars on my bedroom ceiling. This is not by choice though. When I first wanted to put them up my Dad didn’t want me to for fear it would ruin the ceiling when we tried to take them down. Finally he relented and I put them up. Years later when I tried to take them down, pieces of drywall kept coming down with them- dear ole’ Dad was right. Therefore those stars will remain up forever. If you read this, sorry Dad! In my defense though, there is no feeling quite like sleeping under the stars.

How lucky am I to have this be the last thing I see before falling asleep?! Is that the big dipper in between the smoke detector and the light fixture?!

I have been having a hard time coping with the fact that I have been out of college for almost a year. I can no longer tell people I JUST graduated college, and this is hard to come to terms with. But I guess we all have to face the facts and grow up sometimes. I’ll grow up, eventually, but I still have some fun left in me before I do.

Oh How the Years Go By

This end of March marked the 2nd anniversary of my 21st birthday. Or as I like to call it, my sweet 23rd. It also happened to be my sister’s 25th birthday. Terrible planning on my parents’ part. Yes, 23 years ago my sister received the greatest birthday present anyone could ever ask for-me. It is hard to believe I’m already 23. It’s hard for a lot of people to believe it as well seeing as I don’t age. I’ve looked this way since 8th grade, I’m timeless.  Blink 182 says “Nobody likes you when you’re 23.”  I hope this isn’t the case. I need people to like me otherwise my confidence level will go down the drain!

 My sister and I used our birthday to take a break from our Lenten promise of giving up sweets-“Kathleen and Bridget fall the first time”.  Actually we ate sweets in a week long celebration of our birth. Don’t worry though, once the celebrations ended we supported each other in getting right back on track-“Bridget helps Kathleen carry the cross”.
Bridget was conscientious of preventing cataracts from a very young age. Thus, she wore a visor to protect her baby blues from the light even indoors

Bridget was conscientious of preventing cataracts from a very young age. Thus, she wore a visor to protect her baby blues from the damaging effects of the light even indoors.

My mom kept asking me to give her my birthday list, but when you are a sophisticated 20 something such as myself, its hard to come up with things. It was so much easier when I was younger to make my birthday list because I always asked for the same 4 thing for about the first ten or twelve years of my life:
1. Moon Boots
2. Go cart
3. Mini Trampoline
4. Stilts
What can I say, I was an adrenalin junkie in my younger years. Nothing gives you a rush quite like jumping on a mini trampoline or strapping on a pair of stilts to be closer to the ceiling. And what is better than feeling the wind in your hair as you drive an obnoxiously loud go-cart? Unfortunately I never got anything on that list. I was such a deprived child. I think my parents were trying to suppress my thrill-seeking personality. Or they knew that all those things were junk and I would get tired of them in about 3 days. Who needs those toys anyway? Instead we Kelly kids made our own fun. On hot summer days we would get into our swim suits and go running through our neighbor’s sprinkler system. Nothing screams “The family with all those kids down the street are a bunch of Hill Billys” quite like running around someone else’s property while they try to water their grass. Other days we would set up elaborate traps to try and catch bunnies. And by elaborate I mean we would put a carrot in a box in the backyard and watch from the window to see if any rabbits would fall for our trick. Those damn rabbits outsmarted us every time though. Other days we would climb the tree next to our house with a pair of binoculars in hand and blatantly spy on the neighbors. We took “Neighborhood Watch” to a whole new level. On outings to the mall we would run into stores and pose like the mannequins in the store front window. My Mom was smart and kept a good distance away from us when we did that.
This year it was very hard to come up with things to ask for. I knew I wanted a new bathing suit for the summer (Not to run through other people’s sprinkler systems though) so I decided to look through the Victoria’s Secret Catalog that came in the mail. Sheesh what a mistake that was! How am I supposed to pick out a bathing suit when all of the models are in those ridiculous poses? No one sits on the beach like that! I can’t pick out a super cute swim suit when they are all contorting their bodies like that, it’s distracting!! I don’t even know why I was looking through the Victoria Secret Magazine though, I would be better off finding a bathing suit in the Limited Too catalog since I pretty much have the body of a 12 year old.
Duke demonstrating for us how people actually lounge on the beach.

Duke demonstrating for us how people actually lounge on the beach.

 I did get myself a quite wonderful gift though. You see, for Christmas Santa got me a gym membership, and for my birthday Kathleen canceled it. I know what you all are thinking. Wah this girl is lazy, she has no self-discipline. And you know what I have to say to that? You’re right. But I ‘m sorry, I just like myself too much to be the type of person that belongs to a gym. I just don’t believe I deserve that sort of  punishment. I like to keep myself happy and I like to keep my running shoes looking like new. Plus there are just not enough hours in the day to work AND work out. I had to choose one or the other. The job brings home the bacon so that stays.  Also Bridget and I started re-watching all the episodes of the O.C. so that take precedence over everything.
What I really wanted for my birthday money can’t buy:
1. Smaller ear lobes (Ok maybe money can buy plastic surgery but ain’t nobody got time for that!)
2. The super power “Stretchy limbs” so I never have to get up to get anything ever again
3. A job that pays me just to live my life and have fun
4. And of course, an unlimited supply of “Bear Claw” cake that I can eat and not get fat.
I have come to terms in my 23 years of life that I will never get these things. Its ok though, as long as I have chocolate, I know things are going to be ok.