When you were a child, adulthood probably seemed like it would never come. Your parents or teachers would give you endless words of wisdom that could only be understood from their perspective, so those words probably went in one and ear and right out the other. But now that you’ve finally reached adulthood or some form of it (like paying bills, yikes), here are seven sayings you've never understood until now:
1. “Money doesn’t grow on trees."
Your parents probably told you this when you asked for a raise in your allowance or for $5 to go to the corner bodega. When they told you no, you were probably flabbergasted.
How could those human ATM machines say no to you? But now that you know the misery of paying bills or saving your lunch money for your bar tab instead, you know know exactly what your parents meant. Cheers to the next payday (I guess).
2. "Stop wishing you're older."
Back in the day, you couldn’t wait to be older to stay out later, drive a car, put on makeup, not go to school anymore and be able to legally drink. But now that we’re finally older, we all wish we could go back to the days of nap time and "Blue’s Clues."
The reality of the 9-to-5 routine is becoming more real, and time just seems to disappear. The years are just going by faster, and the days you thought would never come are finally here (turning a quarter century, getting your first full-time job, turning the big 3-0). It just seems like by tomorrow we’ll already be married with kids. Bet you had never wished you were older.
3. "You have to go to college in order to find a good job."
Unless you’re an heir to a multi-million dollar fortune, it was probably instilled in you that college is a necessary step to finding a good job. But was I the only little girl who thought as soon as I graduated I would be almost rich?
While that’s not exactly the case, as you grow older, you begin to realize that your parents were right, and it really is hard to maintain a good salary without some sort of education or formal training. You really do need that extra piece of paper to make you stand out in the job market.
4. “No one said life is fair.”
So, they told you that you had to go to college to get a well-paying job. But now you have to use that money to pay off college. How is this even possible or fair? The more autonomy we get, the more we see a lot of things in life are just not fair.
It seems like a third of our paycheck goes to taxes, and then some of it goes to bills, until we’re finally left with just enough to have a shot of whiskey or a vodka and cranberry to make us just feel a little bit better about our lives.
5. “You’re only as good as the company you keep.”
When Tommy got in trouble for making fun of Ashley’s sneakers, you also did, since you were right there and you were Tommy’s friend. But to this day, you swear you didn’t take part in making fun of Ashley.
After this incident, someone probably told you this. I know I’m not the only one who knows of old childhood friends who were up to no good and are still up to no good today.
Now I look back and think, “That’s why Mom didn’t want me to hang out with X, Y and Z.” Our parents saw back then what we couldn’t see ourselves, due to us just being young and naïve. I guess it is true that with age comes wisdom.
6. “If everyone jumped off a cliff, would you do it, too?”
At some point while we were younger, we probably blamed our friends for something stupid we did. But our parents usually responded with this wit.
While what we did was probably not as bad as jumping off a cliff, this statement still makes perfect sense, especially now that we’re older. The consequences of doing something stupid now are way worse than what they were when we were children.
As we discover our interests and figure out what we want to do for the rest of our lives, we learn the importance of following our own paths and not following the crowd if it doesn’t seem like a good idea. Sure, your friends are all financial analysts who make six figures, but that doesn’t mean you have to follow that path, especially if you think if will make you actually jump off a cliff all day. It’s more important to follow your passion.
7. “You’ll understand when you’re older.”
Yes, this one’s true. Now that we’re older, all those little things our parents, grandparents and teachers told us back then make sense now. Before we know it, we’ll be turning into our parents and telling our children exactly what they used to tell us. Isn’t it weird how that happens?