On Becoming a Grown Up

I want to sit on your porch with you again. Maybe its not even your porch anymore…

I want to sit with you and cry about the sharp edges of adulthood. You aren’t my dad. We don’t talk often but when we do I know you mean it — your wisdom is pure and your empathy is genuine.

Maybe this is why I wish for this moment. If you view my life through a distant lens, I’m not Amy the hardened adult. I’m still Amy, your 6-year-old neice you snuck on to roller coaster rides when I wasn’t tall enough.

Who I am today — I can’t cry. I have no reason to — in every outward perspective, my life has been a series of good fortunes. I have a comfortable home, a loving partner, friends and family. I have a solid career and travel often.

But you and I, we share a common thread of extroverted ambition and a quietly unquenched soul that seeks beauty and meaning over success. We’re ruthless in our logic and softened by the relentless hum of sentimentality.

Watching you as I grew up, you were always your own caged bird. Trapped in your addiction to cigarettes and power. Dazzling in your sharp suites and charisma. Heartbreaking in the fleeting moments of distant, lonely stares and whisperings of adultery. I idolized you. I pitied you.

You always told me that I could be anything. I felt powerful and beautiful in your eyes. I believed in and strived to be the woman you imagined I’d someday become. You didn’t tell me it came with the cost of living for your ego. The detachment from your soul — where you see numbers before people. Where you get really comfortable saying “it’s a business need” and seek validation of your actions through nods from the meaningless perspectives in the room — often motivated by ego as well.

I learned about the beauty of love and family and connection through your words. I learned about self-image and merciless drive through your actions. I didn’t get it then but I understand it now — I never thought I’d be that person but here I am today. Can I cry to you? Would you get it? It’s not what I don’t have, it’s who I no longer am.

Writing when the feeling is right.

Writing when the feeling is right.