Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Fun Identity Crisis

The other day, I was talking with one of my new co-workers who is 32, outgoing and seemingly a lot of fun.


We had a laugh-filled conversation about dating, going out and crazy-wild nights out. At the end of our chat, she said something enthusiastic, yet non-committal, like:


“I never go out like that any more. But maybe we should do it sometime!”


I’m pretty sure I agreed with her every (uncertain) word.


A few years ago – alright, last year -- if a potentially new friend said that to me, I would’ve invited her to join me and my girlfriends for drinks, which inevitably would have led to a night of dancing, and then maybe some late-night karaoke or hot dogs.


But today, I’ll admit there’s probably a 50/50 percent chance that would happen. Maybe we would go out and party like we are 26 again in cute tops and high heels. Or maybe we’d just meet at a trendy restaurant for dinner and go home.


When in the world did this shift happen? And how?


I can answer the second part of my question with a few simple explanations: In the past year, I’ve moved away from my hard-core going out crew, gotten into a serious relationship and relocated to a city that is much more spread out than Brewtown.


Yet, judging from my co-worker’s similar sentiments, I think it’s actually less about my specifics and more about our shared generalities.


We’re 32. We’ve done the crazy nights out many, many times. Inevitably, the day was going to come when the fun was going to wear out.


I’m not really apologetic about being at this point in my life. In two weeks I'll be 33, I think it would be more weird – if not troubling -- if I were still partying with a gusto and hooking up with randoms.


It does leave me in a precarious position, though. Nowadays, while I know that I don’t want to hang out at clubs where the 22-year-old girls look naked and I feel like a Grandma, I’m not really sure where I do want to hang out.


These days, I find myself wondering: what is fun?


I’d like to say it’s just hanging out with my man at home, cooking dinner and watching baseball. And no doubt, that's where I'm happiest. But you should have seen the way I bit his head off last Friday when he called us “boring.” He swears he was only kidding, but I'm so paranoid about giving up my reputation as a Fun Girl, I couldn't let the comment go.


The other end of the spectrum isn’t ideal either. I still adore getting together with my girlfriends and will never quit maintaining those relationships. But as early 30-somethings, most of us have serious jobs, boyfriends, husbands, kids and other responsibilities, so we’re not exactly on a mission to drink and dance with no regard for tomorrow.


It’s such a weird middle place to be in, the 30-something, post-crazy-day, but pre-children era. A transition period when the idea of moving to the suburbs is just as foreign as an entire night in stilettos.


Thankfully, I've since had another conversation with my new work-friend, who agrees with me completely about things being a little different now.

We still have tentative plans to hang out some night outside of work. We just have to figure out the particulars.

Y'know, something fun.

47 comments:

wfbdoglover said...

I feel the same way at 41... (sigh)

shoegirrrl said...

Yawn....Just because you have decided to sit at home and cook dinner for/with your man does not mean thats what all the 30 somthings have decided to do! Maybe you gave your BF such a hard time about his comment he made about calling you guys boring because maybe deep down you know its true.

Jen said...

I love your post. I'm only 27 and I am already asking myself "am I too boring?!" Don't get me wrong, I love going out, having a few too many brews and eating pizza at 2am. But, seriously, we put too much pressure on ourselves. I can't keep up with the lifestyle of a 22 year old party girl. Its soo much work - and for what outcome? Kudos to you for wanting to hang at home with your man and watch baseball and NOT feel like you're missing out on life. Maybe we're just finding what really is the good life. :)

John said...

Still generalizing and labeling instead of speaking of just your own experiences. (sigh)

As for this entry, you have a self-esteem issue. The way to build self-esteem is through accomplishment, big or small.

You are starting to sound like a bitter mid 30's Whitefish Bay WI woman/family who is insecure in their own life/lives and doesn't understand that different people do different things. Now first thing I'll say is I threw in that location reference because I know you'd "get it." 2nd I'd say there are many people in that location who are far different than that stereotype, or insert another place I've lived like Chicago.

Being fun doesn't have to mean Taco Burrito Express at 3am or Arturo's at similar time every night or often.

You need a hobbie that you enjoy and explore to some point of depth and not superficial surface level. You sound like the person who who let's others, or trends decide what's the cool thing to do or cool place to be. And, you don't have enough self-esteem and confidence to think that where you are and what you are doing is the place to be at that time. I know people like that, and that's sad, but not all that uncommon.

At least this time you didn't judge a guy you've never met, that's a small upgrade from the last entry.

frustrated.... said...

One post a month? I really enjoy your blog, but am frustrated. I know people live busy lives, but if you have a blog, and want people to read it, you need to update it more often. Your friend from Milwaukee used to have a blog and it seems to me yours is headed for the same fate. I hope I am wrong...

It's A Jaime Thing said...

Great post! I'm there myself right now, as the majority of my friends are married and have kids. I'm married, but no kiddies yet, so our lives are all definitely different now.

Sure, we still go out for birthdays and celebrate from time time other fun things like showers, weddings or whatever else comes up, but the going out dancing, every single weekend, that I used to love so much? Gone. Well, the every weekend part, anyway. :)

Vikki, I'm so excited to see you've become a reporter in Chicago, you should be very proud of yourself - congratulations!

I know it's been a long time since H.T. days - but I hope all is well. I too write a blog now, I have been writing for about 1 1/2 years.

It's a wedding blog I write for brides, which has grown quite a bit, to my pleasant surprise! It's also brought me some great opportunities I never expected, so I love it - but mostly because I enjoy writing & helping brides. :)

I currently am redesigning my blog, hoping to launch the new site in January, so I'm really excited.

If you get a chance, stop by & check it out! Or, shoot me an email - which you can find at my site:

www.itsajaimething.com

I've added you to my blog roll - have a lovely day & best of luck to you!

Sincerely,
Jaime @ "It's A Jaime Thing"

InFact said...

Wow.

This blog WAS terrific in the past.

BUT it now seems dead.

What happened Vicki?

As for your last post, I agree with John that you need a hobby or activity to do with your BF.

Have you tried partner dancing?

Lindy Hop Swing? Chicago has many great venues.

Daniel said...

Please come back, Vikki.

We don't want your blog to pass away.

Daniel said...

Looks like this blog has lost its life.

Hope Vikki found a new life and is now "plus two."

Best wishes.....

Kevin Markey said...

Hey boys and girls:

I thought about Vik giving you the answer on this but I didn't want you in the dark. She is very happy, recently married and considering a new blog.

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