My little sister has her senior prom this weekend, and is graduating from high school next weekend, from the same school I went to. Some of her teachers were my classmates. Needless to say, this makes me feel old and unhip.
I also feel like an imposter - I mean, I think people think I'm grown up! Can you imagine if they really knew me?? How I love to giggle at fart jokes? That I still want a pony with all my heart for every birthday and Christmas? That I still spend time scared and sad and mad and uncertain and awkward and all that shit we all thought we would grow out of, but somehow you don't get to? Little did we know it was just the human condition, except as a grown up, you have other shit to juggle, too. Mortgages and car payments and annoying bosses and shallow coworkers and privilege and the lawn and what's for dinner tonight and maybe we'll be not-tired enough to have sex tonight.
I want to warn my baby sister, to tell her that grownupness isn't all it's rumored to be. That she'll likely spend a great deal of time feeling like a kid playing dress up. That moving out doesn't equal certainty and equilibrium and some Friends episode where the guy you love finally figures out to love you back. I don't want to scare her - I just don't want her to feel the same disappointment I did when I started to figure it out.
But I also don't want her to miss out on the joys of it. Discovering that you can leave your dirty dishes in the sink if you want, goddamit! Choose what you want to watch. Go to bed when you feel like it. Meet people who have been places you've never even heard of, stay up talking to someone just because you can. Learn what brings you peace, what gives you comfort, what makes your heart sing.
No, not scared. Just aware. Knowing that, while her big sister is here for her, I don't have a ton of answers, either. I'm still just a kid looking for my path, too. But I've tried to leave markers for her. Here's hoping they're visible.