the laid.back Buddhist has MOVED...back!

Wednesday, September 5

Defying Age

There are days when I think I'm 21, just backwards...as in 12.

And really, at what age is one really an adult? You can't put a number on it because it's different for every person. It's like asking what is a marriageable age, you know?

I mean, I could be considered an adult at 21. Though, it could also be when I graduate, when I buy my first home or when I first treat my parents to a weekend getaway trip. Or when I finally become a mother myself.

It all seems a long way's away.

As I've gotten older, you see, my mom and I have become closer. In a womanly sense. It's almost as if the more I continually strive to be my own person, the more I need her in my life. My mom is family, friend, role-model, mentor, love, laughter, and a bundle of sheer joy.

But she is also my mother. If that makes any sense.

There will always be certain things that simply can't be told to one's mother. And other things I greatly dislike telling her when I know it'll cause unnecessary worry. Even if she says she won't worry.

Case in point? Age 12.

The first time I took a flight by myself for summer camp, my mother claimed she wouldn't worry at all, that I'd be just fine--I'm learning to be independent! I took her words at face-value and being swiftly caught up in the novel excitement of being away from home...I didn't call home the first night.

Or the second night.

I woke up the third morning mortified to be requested by my counselor that I call home as soon as possible. My mom had called and firmly believed that I connected the wrong flight. That her eldest daughter had been shipped off to Russia. I kid you not.

Which is why if I'm dealing with a difficult situation, it's not that I won't tell my mom...I tell her afterwards.

After I've handled it. I then make damn sure I'm in control of my emotions when I call my mom so as to not cause her added unnecessary worry. I want to be able to explain to her what happened, how I reacted, to be able to reassure her that they didn't take advantage of my soft-hearted nature, and that any drama has come to a decided end.

See, in my 3's meme previously, I listed "forgiving certain people for their actions, prejudices, and grudges (against me)" as one of the things I'm currently doing. I dislike holding grudges and would rather forgive, to let go...than resent a situation that can't be changed. It's not worth the effort to feel bitter. However, it's extremely hard to forgive selfish, immature people when they make my mom worry about me.

A friend of mine asked me, "But don't you want to prove them wrong? I want to make them respect you...to see that they're wrong!"

Only I don't believe in making decisions to prove other people wrong. When I make decisions, what matters is that I and the people directly involved or affected know what's right, know what's really going on. To hell what others think, even if it's wrongly. I can't control what other people choose to think.

All that matters is that I can look into the mirror and respect the person looking back at me.

20 Musing(s):

dcr said...

Only I don't believe in making decisions to prove other people wrong. When I make decisions, what matters is that I and the people directly involved or affected know what's right, know what's really going on. To hell what others think, even if it's wrongly. I can't control what other people choose to think.

You write stuff like that, yet worry about being like you're 12?

You're more adult than a lot of people your age. Heck, you're probably more adult than some parents!

Joanne said...

Dan: I love how you left me a comment at the exact same time I was leaving one for you on your blog. And you say, I'M everywhere!

dcr said...

See, you worry me when you don't post for a whole day! Am I supposed to spar with myself? LOL!

Actually, I was checking my Technorati rank, and I checked one of the blogs that linked to me, where I discovered him linking back to you. So, then I popped on over to your blog and saw the new post.

You see, everywhere I go, there you are. Even people linking to me are linking back to you! Better get that domain and WordPress site up soon so you can work on getting your Technorati rate built back up. I did it back when I had a rating of about 3 or 4, and worried how long it would take to rebuild that with the new blog! Not that long, actually, fortunately.

And, with your ubiquitousness, it shouldn't take you too long either!

polliwog said...

I really love your writing Joanne. This one got to me in a personal sense. Though some days I feel 12 (and being around my own mother can make me feel that way), I have daughters that are 13, 14 and 15 and I know this is how they think about me now too. Weird. :-)

Joanne said...

Dan, oh Dan! After such a comment, how could you not expect me to go off searching for the blog you spoke of?! It hasn't showed up on Technorati just yet, so I had to do some sleuth-surfing (while catching up on some blog-reading)...but I finally found it on Chris Bloczynski! Yay me! I feel like I won a point or something...

;)

Joanne said...

Polli: Yeah, my mom is versatile with her age...er, her age is versatile with her? Knowing that it's okay to be a kid and lean on one's mother no matter what age is one of the secrets of happiness...if it isn't, well it oughta be right? =)

mikkers said...

first of all, i think it is *so* adorable that you love and care about your mom's feelings so much that you want to resolve problems first before you talk to her. Adorable! And mature! and independent! and considerate! You love your mommy and well you should
because, well, they are very important, but you already know that.

secondly, as a personal motto, it is always satisfactory in the long run to make personal decisions for yourself (that's why they are "personal") and not for the sake of pleasing other people.

As we brainstormed last night, we are committed to being Niche Free and part of that idea is also extending it outside of your blog to being niche free in your life and interactions with others. Who says you have to play nice all the time or to conform to other's ideas of who you are?

And half of me believes that "you know who" doesn't even really believe what she is saying. She's just scooping up ideas she finds on the side of the road to Ultimate Selfishness and packing it in along with the other vagabond excuses and then unloading everything at your front doorstep in the hopes that one of them might convince you, to heck if it's logically sound or true.

okay, now i am inspired to do a blog post...

dnordstrom said...

Wow, you have a solid habit of making me smile. I mean, your stuff makes me happy because it's so real. And I tell you, making me happy isn't easy at all. :D

I may just write you a personal reply for this while I'm waiting for the new touch-screen iPod to come out.

By the way, age is just too subjective, too complex, makes no sense whatsoever. Timeless and shapeless is the way to go. Here's another quote from my collection, from Mr. Lee:

“Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless - like water. Now you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup, you put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, you put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.”

jon said...

I'm with Miki. It says something very important about you that you care about your mother's feelings. And it is exciting to see you growing into a deeper and deeper relationship with her. This is a thing to cherish.

David said...

Your mom had some wild thoughts going on! Why did she assumed you were shipped to Russia instead of another country!? I don't like to hold grudges on people because that is just too stressful and unhappy. Also age is just a time measurement; we shouldn't go by it since some adults still act like kids.

Chris C said...

I found this blog through Blog Day and Polliwog's site. Nice one you got here :)

I think as I have gotten older I think less about proving anything to anyone. I wish I had this happen earlier in life because it is so much easier going around secure in knowing you don't have to do something just because someone else isn't sure you can actually do whatever it is.

You just got a rare burst of seriousness. I usually am not so :)

dcr said...

Joanne: 11 to 25 in about a week. Hmm. Maybe I should stop telling people about you before you trounce my Technorati rating!

And, since you went obsessively looking for Chris Bloczynski's blog, I guess I can give you a point for that. Maybe I'll give you an extra point if you can name his arch-nemesis? :-)

Joanne said...

Miki: You know, we oughta create an avatar to represent niche-free-blogging or something. You are sooo right, playing nice to everybody sometimes mean you're not being nice to yourself.

Daniel: Your quote reminded me of one of Dan's recent posts I think you'd really enjoy: http://www.dcrblogs.com/2007/09/04/explode-like-sodium-flow-like-water/ And, thanks for sharing your personal blog with me! It's been added to my "I LIKE TO READ" linkage =)

Jon: Thanks. It's something that surprised me even though I've heard of women becoming closer to their moms as they age. Just like how I think my relationship with my mother will probably deepen in another way that'll amaze me when I start raising my own family.

David: A mother's instinct is irrationally unexplainable? Haha!

Chris: That's so interesting, I found you through Polliwog as well...she's our connecting link! "...it is so much easier going around secure in knowing you don't have to do something just because someone else isn't sure you can actually do whatever it is." You've nailed the heart of the matter. TOTALLY agree!

Dan: I prefer to call it compulsively searching for it. And of course I know Chris' arch-nemesis is ChrisBlogging! Thanks for the easy point *tee hee* =P

xtina said...

I'm just a tad jealous of the bond between you and your mom. But then I remind myself that I have an older sister with whom to talk about such things, albeit most of which are carefully worded and very selective.

With that said, I have a question. When you wrote:
"My mom had called and firmly believed that I connected the wrong flight. That her eldest daughter had been shipped off to Russia. I kid you not.
Which is why if I'm dealing with a difficult situation, it's not that I won't tell my mom...I tell her afterwards."

So... call her when you've LANDED in Russia or AFTER you've returned to U.S. soil? Hmmm?

dnordstrom said...

Great post by Dan there, that's what I'm talking about. Survival of the strongest is long gone. In the new world, you have to adapt and be fluid.

Now, I'm not talking adaption as in shaping yourself after others. I mean designing your actions and reactions with your desired purpose in mind, always making the most out of the resources you have. Or something like that, I don't know, I just got lost in my own mind. Happens sometimes, doesn't it?

Rolando said...

I'm sure the answer to what age makes someone an adult will vary person to person?

But, it looks like you are already an adult just from the decisions you have already made.

Having a stronger bond with your mom, standing up for who you are and protecting the ones you love and most of all for respecting yourself everyday when you look into the mirror.

Seems characteristic of adulthood to me. :)

Erina Hart said...

It seems that you and I share much of the same connection to our mothers. I knew exactly what you meant when you were describing all of the things your mother represents to you. Isn’t the world strange when we grow older? The relationship with our mother changes, yet it all stays the same.

It is a paradox.

Also, I relate to you saying “I think I'm 21, just backwards...as in 12.” I too feel twelve sometimes. Especially, when I enter the home of an elder that I respect. Sometimes being near my mother makes me feel even younger than 12. She always has the answer. At least, that is how it seems.

Joanne, this was another beautiful post. I am so proud of you for telling your stories to the world. You have a gift for the quill. It would pain me if you didn’t use that gift.

Joanne said...

Vy: Hahahahaha! I think I can make an exception for an unplanned trip to Russia.

Daniel: Ohh, does it ever. I always need to have a pen and pad handy, sometimes epiphanies can get rather elusive. It's true, being able to quickly adapt is a must in an ever-changing world...but I think being fluid takes strength as well.

Rolando: Aw, thanks. I think it's more that as I become more adult, the more my mom can make feel like a little girl all over again and in a heartbeat.

Erina: Oh, I know what you mean...one of the most complex relationships out there is between mothers and daughters. Haha, it makes me wonder if I'll be able to "have all the answers" when I become a mother myself.

Erina Hart said...

Joanne, I think you will have plenty of answers.

Just remember that none of us know them all :)

Joanne said...

Thanks, Erina! Although, I think I'll more questions than answers, haha ;)


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