I feel it.
My cigarette hangs between two unpolished fingernails out the open
window of a mini-van. My shorter hair gets happily abused by the highway
winds. I abandoned the long, carbon copy hair cut of girls that shop the
juniors department for a shoulder length, very fashion forward but non-
obnoxious haircut that makes one look European. No more following pop star
trends. No more following anything. All exploring.
I feel it.
New, matching, IKEA furniture fills the van, purchased with the extra
money I'm making at my new job. My first non-entry-level job. My first
job that required a degree and experience and offers benefits including
that strange phrase that my parents often discussed - "401k".
I hear it, too.
No more fucking rap that's only good for mating to. I'm tapping my
steering wheel to acid jazz then some odd avant gard stuff that's quite
I smell it, too.
In my basket of un-dyed lemons, unbleached wheat flour, and soybeans
at the farmer's market, I smell it. I eat vegetables by choice. I don't
live off TV dinners anymore. My boyfriend throws in a bag of Zapatista
brand coffee beans. We'd do just about anything to support Che Guevera's
causes. I vote. We'll probably grind these beans and drink its black
coffee as we read the morning's editorials and listen to CNN.
I taste it there, too.
I see it in the new way I look at children. The way nature has made
my hips a more perfectly shaped seat for a child. The way I can now
lovingly endure their cries and late nights. The way I find myself gently
chastising them and shaping their behavior, eerily similar to how my own
But I think the first time I really saw it was when I stood between
the junior's department and the misses department at Kohl's. I looked to
my left at the juniors. The clothes looked showy, gaudy, costume-y.. .. ..
like play clothes. I didn't see anything I could wear to any occasions in
my daily life. I looked to my right at the misses. I could wear these to
work, to the dive bar where my friends and I sit and have drinks, or to
dinner with my boyfriend's family. I no longer subscribed to the theory
that the more sexually suggestive my clothing was, the more likely I'd
receive positive male attention, and the misses jeans didn't show my butt
crack, and so.. .. .. I drifted.
And I realized growing up isn't bad. You don't necessarily turn into
that scary old teacher with bad fashion sense. You just find your own
niche. Nor do you necessarily merge from the on-ramp of the rebellious
teens to the superhighway of the other conforming, indistinguishable
members of society. But sometimes you see and decide for yourself that
adults had the right idea - vegetables really do taste good and drinking
too much does sometimes have disastrous consequences.
I feel it. Maybe it's a new step in Maslow's hierarchy of needs I'm
entering or a new crisis of Erikson's that I face. Or maybe it's just
But I feel it.