I want to buy a dish rack. And lamps. And those cheap canvas paintings you can get at Ross and Walmart and thrift stores. I want to buy a set of measuring cups and a blender and a ceiling fan. I want to buy a toilet paper dispenser and a shower rack. I want to get bath mats and hand soaps and curtains and figurines. I want to go into a store with the intention of buying things for a home.
Why? Why do I want all of this?
I’m 19 years old. I live with my parents and I don’t have a job. I have no need to buy all these Suzy-homemaker things, but I want them with a passion I’ve only ever felt for writing. I want to spend a shitload of money on baking supplies, attempt to make a cake or something more complicated, then sit in despair when it doesn’t work out at the end. And then I want to keep trying until I get it right so I can take it to my parents as a gift and show off my baking skills. I want to look at the dishes in the sink and think to myself, That is entirely my responsibility. I want to yell profanities at the top of my lungs at 4 in the morning then invite some guy to stay the night without worrying about judgment from my family members.
I think about moving out a lot. Not like, oh, I really need to get out of here kind of moving out but more like the actual act of moving out. I ask myself questions like: What would I take? How would I pack those picture frames? Will I use boxes with big labels on them? Will I get a label maker just for this purpose? Would I be moving in with a roommate or by myself? Will I have a bathroom to myself? If I had a bathroom to myself, what would the sink look like? Would I keep everything clean and orderly? Would I invite people over? Would I even use the kitchen? What kind of key does my apartment need? Would it be furnished? What kind of covers would I buy? If I had a window, would it be a nice view?
Is this what I have to go through? Do I really have to experience these cliches as I get older?
The other day I saw a quote, or something like one, that asked why schools don’t teach us how to love one another or help calm someone down when they are trying to commit suicide or how to act around other people. And it pissed me off. I’m only 19 years old and I already know the answer to those questions while people much older than I am are still contemplating it. School is only meant to educate you on academia and things that can be be properly taught. They can’t teach you life. You learn life by living it.
And when I say living it, I mean the really shitty stuff that makes you cringe and embarrassed. I mean the time in the fourth grade that you sat in chocolate and everyone made fun of you until you called your parents so they could bring you a new pair of jeans. I mean the long love letter you wrote in bright, gel ink to your seventh grade crush and never got a reply from. I mean the anger you felt when you and your best friend were fighting and stopped speaking to each other for a month. I mean every time you woke up and thought you couldn’t take another day of it. You have to live through all of that in order to understand life and teachers can’t teach you that. You have to live through that in order to appreciate every moment after your worst moment.
My worst moment has passed and I just want a dish rack. Think about it. How far away from that low point am I that the only thing that matters right now is if I can buy a dish rack? Pretty fucking far, that’s how. I guess, to answer my first question, I want all this grown up stuff because I’m ready to grow up. I’m ready to leave behind the part of my life where I’m learning to live and start putting that knowledge into action. I’m ready to live.