A childlike adulthood


Filling out tax return forms blows.

First of all, many of the questions have ambiguous answers. Let’s start with part A, question #1: “Am I a dependent?”

Well, it’s funny you should ask. To be honest, I do not know. As a college student, I am in a Limbo-like state. I am no longer an innocent child who depends on my parents for everything. However, I am not quite a responsible, independent adult who understands bewildering grown up concepts such as filling out the Maryland tax return form (or understanding why I can turn it in late since everyone always makes a big fuss about April 15th: “tax day”).

Being 18 is exciting, but it is also confusing. We are all at this place in which we are unsure of where exactly we stand in this giant world. I know I can no longer be a kid, but so many aspects of my life constantly remind me that I am “only 18 – not nearly an adult.” I am not yet responsible enough to have a legal glass of wine (and won’t be for 3 more years), yet I am supposed to be able to fill out a fifty-step tax return form that includes words and phrases that I have never seen.

College is more than “the best four years of your life.” It is more than countless parties, sorority events, and challenging classes. It is a time in which we are able to go out into the world and explore, but we still have one foot in the door. We are not quite independent, but definitely far from being dependent.

When we run out of money in our accounts or we do not understand our tax return forms, our parents are there to help us out. We live “on our own” for the majority of the year, but most of us are not financially responsible for ourselves quite yet. We are making mistakes. We are learning. We are beginning to discover the realities of the world, but have not even begun to see what it is all truly like.

College is a time of transition. It is this special time in which we are stuck between two significant periods: childhood and adulthood. Sometimes we want to rush out and be adults, other times we want to travel back in time and be kids again.

For now, I’ll be a kid and let the Maryland tax return form wait until tomorrow night. But I better go – it’s time to go be a grown up as I play “Mommy” and nanny children for 11 hours.



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