1. We may still shift our eyes as we wander the isles, fight our shaky hands as we hand over our I.D and get in and out as fast as we can, but we’re legal and allowed to buy alcohol. No older siblings, no watered down vodka, just the ability to make our own adult decisions.
2. Suddenly you don’t care if you miss a party, full of all too farmiliar faces from high school. You don’t care if you’re spotted at the grocery store with sweatpants and a naked face. You don’t care what other people think. You know what makes you happy and that’s all that matters.
3. Gone are the days when you can’t eat dessert if you don’t eat your vegetables. You can eat cold pizza for breakfast and alternate between salad and cake. You’ll learn the importance of eating healthy, but you’ll learn the thrill in knowing you don’t have to.
4. You can buy the shirt you’ve had your eye on, go to the beach with your friends, and you don’t have to spend the hour prior, begging your parents for money. You have a wallet, money, credit cards and control of how you use it. You have bills to pay but there’s time to do that after you do what you want.
5. Those years you spent asking your parents for a pet. Dragging a stuffed animal on the ground, reciting the responsibility you know it would be, just for your pleas to be ignored. Fortunately, if you live on your own and have the time and money, you can go to the pound today and go find a dog. Bonus: your pet – your rules!
6. Chores are inevitable but growing up means finding a way to make them survivable. Laundry, vacuuming and dishes are all a little more fun when you have a glass of wine by your side.
7. Mornings no longer start with a glass of orange juice. You can now close your eyes, take a deep breath and sip on a warm cup of coffee or tea. You will finally understand what got your parents and teachers through the days when you were younger.
8. Your body no longer wants to stay up until three a.m. and sleep in until two. Surprisingly, you’ll be amazed how much free time you have when you’re up hours before lunch.
9. Aside from missing out on back to school shopping, running into friends in the hallways, graduating High School and furthermore College, means no more algebra, last minute study sessions or the pain that is group projects. You’ll face a whole new collection of problems with a real world job, but it’s nice to live your life without a bell.
10. Your parents start to look different when they no longer lecture you about your curfew, grades or cleaning your room. In fact, you’ll want to tell them about your life, visit them when you’re bored and call them just to hear their voice. You’ll understand their unconditional love is something you can never replace.