At 34 years old I’m officially a grown up and I’ve come to the realization that being an adult means giving up all the things I enjoy. Call it wisdom or fear but as I get older I’m constantly adding everything I enjoy to the growing list of things that are bad for me. Why can’t I have a natural love of vegetables and exercise? Food was the first major category to get hit with the realizations of adulthood. So far I’ve had to give up a lot of my favorite foods like cake, pasta, cookies, and bagels because they are unhealthy. On the rare occasion when I treat myself to a forbidden sugar filled dessert I always have that small voice in the back of my heading whispering, “this is going to kill you.” Gone are those carefree dessert days. The next thing that got tainted by adulthood was sex. After moving to Texas I was confronted with the harsh reality that people are not always honest about their HIV status. Coming from Connecticut where my gay community was much smaller and family like I was slapped in the face with the ways of the big city. Like bad food on the rare occasions when I do have a hook up there’s always a nagging uncertainty lurking. Food and sex have made me realize that the recklessness of my youth is disappearing with a great alacrity.
I’ve given up a few things but the journey is not over. Although I’ve cut down on sugar and carbs I still eat too much fast food. I’m sure a doctor would say any fast food is too much fast food so that will probably be the next to go. Goodbye my beloved Whataburger chicken fingers. Most of the rest of my list can all call be lumped under the general category of I can’t afford that. Finances have been on my mind a lot lately. I say that as if it’s a new phenomenon. To be honest my bank account is constantly on my mind. However recently I have been trying to think of more ways to tighten my budget. That’s caused me to look at unneeded travel with a more critical eye and I’m also currently in the midst of a clothing embargo. I’m trying to go 2 months (until July 1st) without buying any clothes. It’s a practice in giving up the joyous past time of shopping. Now if I can only find a way of spending less money on food (my biggest expense after rent) I’d be home free. The last thing I’ve given up is the dream of owning my own home. I haven’t totally given it up as much as I’ve just readjusted the timeline. I figure it will be 2020 at the earliest before I can start down that path.
With all this said I should acknowledge that I do enjoy getting older although as I re-read this post I’m not sure why. Is wisdom really the only benefit of age? If so that’s a raw deal. (Of course I’m being sarcastic) Seriously though, with everything I will and have given up there have been gains too. I have friends and a wonderful boyfriend so it all balances out.