The In-Between Stage

If you need to know one thing about me, it’s that I LOVE Britney Spears. The obsession began when she emerged on the scene as a sassy schoolgirl performing “Hit Me Baby One More Time”. I stayed loyal even during her head shaving, baby-on-the-lap-while-driving phase. I love her. Now, if you know Britney like I do, then you are probably familiar with her song ” Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman”. If you haven’t seen the video, watch it now. It’s a classic.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IlV7RhT6zHs&fs=1&source=uds]

Anyway, I feel like this video perfectly describes the situation myself and a lot of my recent college grad friends find ourselves in. We have college degrees and a lot of ambition, yet for a variety of reasons most of us don’t feel like real grown ups.

I have a full time job and my own apartment, yet I still need my parents’ help paying for my leased car (hey, I don’t make a lot of money….). Kind of ruins my “I’m an independent woman” thing. Many of my friends are in the same boat. They’re taking internships, going back to school, working part time jobs or have low-paying entry level jobs. While they’re doing these things, they’re relying on their parents for total/partial financial support. It’s normal and a lot of people our age are doing it, yet somehow it still feels a little unnerving.

I think it does something to a girl’s ego when you have to call your mom and ask for some cash to pay the rent/pay for your car/pay off student loans. It does even more to a girl’s ego when you come home from work and have dinner with your parents, and go to sleep in your childhood bedroom (many of my friends are still in this situation). Yes, the “in-between stage” is not the most ideal of places for us recent college grads to find ourselves in, but due to the economy and job market it just can’t be avoided.

There’s also the age issue. Even if I was totally financially independent, I’m still only 22 years old. I’ve never lived in an apartment with a boyfriend before. I’ve never leased a car before. I may feel old in some ways, but in other ways I still need some help figuring out how to be a person. So while I may feel extremely elderly when I walk into the popular bar at my alma mater, I definitely feel young when handling other areas of my life. And to be honest, I don’t hate it.  I like experimenting and figuring out what works and what is stupid. I like figuring out what I want to do with myself and my time and who I want to spend that time with.

I’m not married, I don’t have kids (thank God) and I don’t have a house. Basically, I’m pretty flexible. I can travel when I want, which is nice since most of my friends live in other cities. I can take random classes. I can be spontaneous. I don’t make a ton of money but at this point I don’t really need to. I can tell my hairstylist to give me some red streaks in my hair and when they turn out pink I don’t have to freak out (yeah, that just happened). A few weeks ago I read a quote that I loved. It goes like this, ” Always be prepared for endless transformation.” The time immediately following college is definitely all about endless transformation and even though it feels a little unsettling, I guess that’s how it should be.

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  1. […] The In-Between Stage (this is the first post I ever wrote on the site) […]

  2. […] blogging service, but here are a few links to the first couple of posts that I did. We’ve got this one about the “in between” stage of life. While some things have changed, much of this post […]

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