“Second to the right and straight on til morning.”
-Peter Pan

Adulting – it’s like being a toddler learning how to walk. You stand up, teeter, then ass-plant. Sometimes this leads to hysterical laughing. Sometimes it hurls you into an existential crisis of sobbing and temper tantrums. Sometimes you feel like a complete fuckup.

If adulting is smooth sailing and minimal pitfalls for you then you shouldn’t be reading this blog. This blog is for the disenchanted and the broken-hearted, the dreamers and the ones who fail at their dreams but keep getting back up and trying again and again…the ones with credit card bills in their mailboxes but poetry in their souls.

Sometimes I go over to my ex-boyfriend/current platonic bestie’s house and ask if he is down to build a sheet fort and have a tea party under it. And I’m not entirely joking. Did you ever do that as a kid? Push two couches and an end table together and drape a few bed sheets over the top? Inside your little fort there would be just enough room for you, your best friend, 11 stuffed animals, and your miniature tea set. The madness of the world had no business here. Look at panda bear…see him nodding?

I am a woman in my 30s living in a perpetually grey, sleepy town on the West Coast – or maybe it’s the East coast – I will never tell. Anyway, it’s a small town where it never stops raining. We have about 8.5 days of sun per year. And when it’s raining – which is 351.5 days of the year, life can get depressing. And this rainy town nestled in the foothills of a mountain-range is the backdrop to my initiation into the world of adulting…and dragonslaying (refer to “About the Author”).

There is a yoga studio, a meditation center, or a Sikh worship center on every street corner. The inhabitants here walk around in moccasins, hemp pants, and felt hats, and discuss how the energy changes when it rains in the local organic grocery stores.

No one is in a hurry. Everyone’s skin is youthful and glowey due to the temperate rain forest climate – and due to never being in a hurry. There is a dreamy idealism in every Friday night “Art Walk”, Saturday morning “Ecstatic Dance” and Sunday afternoon “naked bike parade.” Everyone here is on a quest for personal fulfillment and spiritual enlightenment. Here, people are always seeking…something. This is Peter Pan’s Neverland – the place of eternal youth.

And this place has a way of casting a spell and reeling you in. Before you know it, you are parking your bike outside of the organic tea shop downtown where buskers and street mimes are perched with their knapsacks and banjos. You are buying your gluten-free, paleo, stevia-sweetened pastry and your coconut milk chai latte and discussing with the waitress how the energy changes when it rains.

I came here for college and I never left. I was an English Major – the Peter Pan degree. The degree that provides no chance for survival in this corporate jungle of a world. I was a wannabe writer. And I still am. I still cling to this dream. As the poet Langston Hughes queries,

“What happens to a dream deferred?

Does it dry up

Like a raisin in the sun?

Or fester like a sore–

And then run?

Does it stink like rotten meat?

Or crust and sugar over–

like a syrupy sweet?

Maybe it just sags

like a heavy load.

Or does it explode?

It explodes, Langston. Thanks for asking.

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