On awkward phases and pseudo adulthood

Awkward phases — I thought they were supposed to strike for a few relatively insignificant teenage years, provide valuable life lessons about self-esteem/time/patience and then leave us alone.

I suppose I should have expected otherwise, per the fact that I have my beloved Roger Federer poster hanging on one wall and the phrase “classy teal artwork” typed in my Google search bar. For the record, the “classy teal artwork” is entirely too pricey; until it comes on clearance, tennis is my interior design motif.

My newfound awkward stage is more nuanced/cerebral than teenage Taylor’s inability to tame her natural hair or that time my senior year Homecoming date ditched me for Dairy Queen (I know Blizzards are pretty great, but really?).

I’m trying to find my ground as a young professional — in public relations, a field I never expected I’d pursue, let alone love.

I’m in a weird place in terms of social circles. A bulk of my friends are finishing up their senior year of college, a world I left nearly three months ago. At YP events in Des Moines, I’m typically a minimum of four to five years younger than much of the group, deserving of eye rolls if I were to say, “When I was in school … ” yet unable to discuss graduate programs or promotions.

My physical home is the emblem of awkward. For over a week, my TV perched on one wooden stool, I on the other, watching sports in my otherwise empty apartment. I tried to hang a curtain the other evening and wound up with a bump on my head, a rod in two pieces and a pile of black-and-white fabric in a heap on the floor.

But maybe awkward phases aren’t a sign of inadequacy or forever-behind social status. Maybe they’re life’s natural way of reminding me not to get too comfortable.

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