It’s funny because my original intent was to write a document about what I want to do next with my life, but when I sat up to get started it didn’t turn out like that. In order to get to the future, I’m feeling like I have to acknowledge and honor the people who God gave me already to get to the point where I feel like I can deal with the future.
Realizing that not only have you been called to be a servant in ways you imagine to be uncomfortable or humbling, but also that you’ve been failing really badly at it is painful. Deciding what to do about it isn’t easy, either… but here I am.
I ended up looking through the trending twitter topic #AdultingisaPain and coming across the idea of looking for an “adultier adult.” It’s not new and this is not the first time I’ve seen it put this way, but today it got me thinking about the “adultier” adults I depend on. I’d already been thinking about people I need to acknowledge and thank for being who they were when I knew them, but this put me on track to start somewhere.
One of my Facebook friends wrote a post about how POC are represented in media. I suddenly felt compelled to write a post about why I love her. Though I momentarily thought “this is strange,” I wrote and posted it because I do love her and I want to affirm her. On top of that, I don’t often feel super compelled to make Facebook posts; I mostly just get on and then randomly write about something, share or comment on other people’s stuff, so the “I have to do this” feeling was special. I think it was God. I’m glad I didn’t miss him this time. Sometimes, I’ve fail to fulfill missions in life because I’ve deemed them odd and, to me, this is more shameful than failing a test because it was painful. I’m glad I was able to be a blessing to her. I felt good affirming her, but it was not about how it made me feel.
So, all of this has me thinking about what my adulthood looks like.
I know, I know. It seems like a lot of my posts are about me thinking about what I want. Well, that’s probably true and that’s actually okay.
I want to be a woman who honors God with her love. Like, never miss an opportunity where all the things you’ve been through could be for this moment to help someone. Don’t be so quick to say “yes” because it’s expected that you’re in a bind because destiny came when you didn’t expect it. Never be too scared of how it makes you look to shake off shackles you bound yourself with when God calls you to higher ground. I want to use my education in unique ways that make me happy and bless my communities. This is what I want for my adulthood.
My life is full of women whose lives would support my present line of thought. They include my mother and grandmothers.
A culturally relevant historical figure I can regard as a role model is Madame C.J. Walker, whose youth and young adult work life would have never predicted what she would become. Neither her dream nor her end were hindered by having done humble work for a time.
My recollection supplies women in the Bible whose lives are like road maps to me in my season as an increasingly employed, living-at-home, adult daughter. The first is Hagar, who in Genesis 16 was told to return and humble herself and in chapter 21 was released from her period of submission. For me, living with my parents is definitely a season in which I have to practice submission. Of course, it’s different because I am a daughter, not a slave, and I know the people who I am submitting to love me. The second is Esther, who was taken from the life she’d grown accustomed to with her cousin to become a bridal candidate and, eventually, queen. The part that is really for me in her story is when she was called to action. The lives of her people were at stake and Mordecai reminded her that maybe what she’d been through was for the purpose of helping God’s people (and that God’s will would be performed with or without her, but that she would be blessed in answering the call). See Esther 4:14. Like me, Esther had someone (her “adultier adult”) to give her guidance and remind her both of who she was and who God is. Then, she honored them.
Being an adult is not about doing life on your own. It’s not about being fiercely independent either, as I’ve sometimes believed.
Being an adult is partly about learning when to lean, when and how to stand, and remembering to say thank you.
God bless you in your next step.