As I sit here typing this, it’s a Saturday afternoon and I’m sitting at my desk surrounded by knick-knacks and photographs and the greenery both outside and in. I slept in, did some reading and went out for acai bowls for brunch with James. We wandered into some independent stores and came home to upgrade his computer with new hardware *shudders* (not my area of expertise, let’s say that!).
We all have visions and dreams and expectations of what it’ll be like when we “grow up” and then suddenly you’re here…and everything seems pretty normal. The bills have been paid, I’m up to date with Game of Thrones and I’m successfully passing my degree.
But it hasn’t always been acai bowls and plant shopping – after graduating high school I had no fucking clue about ANY OF IT.
Sure, I could do some basic cooking and knew how to chuck on a load of laundry, but my ‘street smarts’, if you will, were pitiful at that. I didn’t realise how bloody difficult times could be when you didn’t have a job, or when your fortnightly study allowance was mostly taken up by rent (meaning after rent I had a little over $100 a week to live off – in Brisbane). Or that time that I didn’t pay my tax property and ended up in over $1000 worth of debt…
Could things have been worse? Absolutely. I always had a warm bed to sleep in and decent clothes to wear and food in my belly. But was I enjoying life and living it to my potential? Absolutely NOT. I learned pretty darn quickly about the value of a good budget and how to cook in bulk (and the importance of freezing said bulk meals).
Having those ups and downs, and being in multiple different living situations in a few short years really put everything into perspective for me. You have no idea how excited I was when I purchased my first bed frame. Hell, I drove to bloody Townsville and back so I could get the exact one I wanted.
Since then, I’ve bought a LOT of house stuff. There’s been too many plants to count, copious amounts of tea mugs, art prints, photo frames, cushions, bookshelves, rugs…You name it, I’ve probably invested in it (or have it on my list – our home is still a work in progress). I know that the whole decluttering and minimalism thing is HUGE at the moment, and whilst I totally respect that lifestyle and have incorporated elements of it into my ethos, I like decorating too darn much to give it up completely.
Okay, so the furniture ramble was off topic, but I think it’s a fine example of just how adulty I’ve become – 17-year-old Vivienne would’ve blown all her cash on band merch, vodka, and a takeaway parmy at her first chance (still all things I enjoy, I must add). It still blows my mind to look back over the years and remember not only how much I’ve done (and spent), but how much I’ve matured and how my tastes/desires have aligned with that.
I had planned to write a whole “things you didn’t know about being an adult” list-style post, but I feel like there are enough of those around already. I’ve previously written about ways to be more environmentally friendly and important tips on renting for the first time (both VERY SERIOUS adult topics!) so aside from letting you know that it IS easy to do your own tax online (and you get it back a lot faster too) I really don’t know what else I can offer you that doesn’t relate directly to my own experiences.
But I guess that’s the whole point of this blog, right? To share things from MY point of view. To give you my honest, swear word-ridden opinions and level with you all as best as I can.
I do have one gemstone of knowledge though, and that’s to remember that even if life feels hellish at the moment – never ending bills, shithole roommate, out of washing powder, major hangover – it’s going to get better. You’re going to learn from your mistakes and discover planning, and not take the first apartment you look at, and pay your bills before you buy new shoes. One day you’re going to end up living exactly where you want to, on your own terms, in your own bed and eat spaghetti on toast for dinner not because it’s all you have left until payday, but because it’s damn well delicious!
Always glad to be of service,