Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Puberty 2: Electric Boogaloo

There is a period of development that takes place in humans somewhere between the ages of 19 and 21. This is the time when your body finally decides to give you the cognitive maturity that should probably have come pre-packaged with the sexual maturity you got at Puberty (it's like you're finally getting the owner's manual for all the fancy new equipment you got when you were 12 a good 8 years later.) Yes, the transition from adolescence to adulthood is that important final step in getting humans ready to function in the real world, and yet I can't help but feel that it is very frequently overlooked. Let's take a look back at Puberty for a moment; it's all anybody can talk about. Puberty thinks it's SOOOO great because of all the gangling, squeaking, pizza-faced monstrosities it fills our middle schools with. Everybody likes to talk about how much Puberty sucked, but I've been thinking about it, and am beginning to believe that the transition to adulthood (Puberty 2.0, I like to call it. Or Puberty 2: The Musical! On ICE!) far surpasses it in suckitude. Here's why:

So you hit Puberty. Boom! Your life suddenly becomes a jumble of confusing feelings and awkward, hideous transformations. Yes, this sucks a lot, but it is also allowed. Middle schools and Junior high schools know that everybody is going through Puberty, and they allow for confusion and emotional upheaval. Now, when you are becoming an adult, you get no such luxury. Your life is not allowed to suck because you are far too busy. Unfortunately, in the prime of your adolescence, when you're finally free from the bonds of high school and are finally feeling good to be you, your body figures it's time to finish wiring that little monkey brain of yours, and gives you a healthy overdose of hormones while it's at it. Of course, now that you have no idea what's going on in any aspect of your life anymore, it's time to start pretending like you have a completely solid idea of everything that's going on, and also finish typing up those five papers that are due next week. Then come the meltdowns. During Puberty your mom would hug you and wipe away your tears and tell you that you're just growing up and that you are a beautiful little shining star. Now, as an emerging adult (unless you live with your parents like I do,) you get people uncomfortably watching the many dubious liquids leak from your puffy, red face, perhaps giving you an awkward pat on the back or a feeble word of encouragement. Sure, good friends will be supportive, but they wont always be around when you completely snap in your economics class. And of course, everybody is pretending that this transition doesn't exist, so if you have a psychotic episode in class, you are suddenly labeled as the crazy one.

It is very late now, and I fear that my mashing of keys will soon cease to make any sort of sense (if it hasn't already.) I guess all I'm really trying to say is that Puberty 2.0 deserves a bit more recognition. Everybody goes through it, and everybody pretends that they don't, which creates some interesting problems when the nervous breakdowns start happening. Really though, none of us college Sophomores have any idea what's going on, so perhaps it ought to be just a bit more socially acceptable to have random episodes of explosive crying, giggling, or outright insanity in the classroom.
Just a thought.

5 comments:

Jessica Grosland said...

Excellent point. This is the point in life when we're supposed to be DOING things, all the important, sets-up-the-rest-of-your-life things. But most of us are still shell-shocked: "Wait, when did we become adults? Shouldn't this come with an instruction manual or something?" We just don't have enough practice at doing things on our own, and if you're like me, that means we botch things up A LOT.

And you're right also about everyone pretending they've got it under control. I always think I'm the only person in my whole class who hasn't even started the research paper, who can't understand what we're reading, who hasn't figured out how to balance this stupid thing called Life yet. And then I run into my entire English class at the library the day before our papers are due, and we all grin guiltily, because we're so glad it's not just US.

P.S. Word Verification: obillyp

Beth said...

All you need is ducks. All you need is ducks. :) All you need is ducks, ducks... ducks is all you need. Mmm. Quack. I love you duck.

Your word verification is creas. Almost crease. But not good enough.

The Erin said...

It's always good to know I'm not alone in these feelings. I had yet another psychotic breakdown last night. I'd almost go so far as to call it a full fledged tantrum. It's getting bad... Hopefully the hormones balance out soon, or certain overly helpful classmates may soon find themselves missing important limbs and organs....

Meg said...

Ha, yes, I totally agree.

And not to be left out, word verification: ledauln. I might steal that for some character's name...

Eileen said...

:) I know exactly what you mean Erin. Thank you for putting it in words. Right on all counts.