Growing Up Into Independence

There comes a time in every young adult’s life when they transition from needing their parent’s wisdom and attention, to gaining their own independence, and being okay on their own. Now for most, this happens when they move out to college and/or get married. My story is a little different, but, nonetheless, is still a transition. It started for me during high school. I was sixteen years old in my junior year, beginning my transformation into my own independence. I had my own job, my own car, and my own agenda for my life. My mom and step-dad were working through their personal problems and my dad and step Mom lived to far away to be too involved. Because of that, I had to rely on my siblings and my friends to be my solid foundations. 

And that was my life for two years, and it was a bumpy one at that. I spent my senior year planning my future: where I was going to go to school, where I was going to live. And before I knew it, two weeks after graduation, I was moved out on my own in my new apartment.

I started calling my parents 4-5 times a week with questions, or routine check-ins, letting them know all about what was going on in my life. It was a little depressing, don’t get me wrong, but unfortunately, I didn’t have the solid friend group to keep me going towards independence. During this time, however, I took to working, and dating on tinder and such. I learned to pay my bills on my own, and grocery shop on my own. And day by day, I learned more about growing up then anybody could ever teach me.

Fast forward to a year and a half which brings us to today, I am now in a great spot financially with a big promotion that just came my way. I am in a stable relationship that teaches me more about myself than I could ever imagine. I call my mom and dad maybe once or twice in a 2-week period, to catch up on life with them. I’m not tooting my own horn… but then again, maybe I am. I’m only 19 year’s old, but I was forced to grow up from an earlier age.

Gaining independence and growing up isn’t a step-by-step guide, or a certain time of your life that has you ready to make all big decisions. It’s a trial period of mistakes and successes (and some home-sickness along the way). Wherever you’re at in your transition to independence, just keep going and choosing the right path for you. Don’t rely on your parents so much to make decisions for you. Get a job, and pay the bills by yourself. Sign up for a credit card, and start building your credit. It takes baby steps, but before you know it, you’ll see how far you’ve come, and feel liberated to go on!