The grass isn’t always greener

Published 10:03 am Monday, October 19, 2015

Sunday as I was scanning through my newsfeed on Facebook I saw pictures of friends, babies, funny posts, gifs and the other nonsense found on social media. A certain Tumblr screenshot caught my attention though.

Saltedcaramels wrote, “Turns out that adulthood is basically a long series of conversations about how tired you are, interspersed with smiling sympathetically as someone else tells you how tired they are (but you’re thinking they are not nearly as tired as you).”

This hit home for me. I know I’ve been telling everyone how tired I am. Sometimes I feel like I talk about it too much and wonder how tired people get of hearing about my fatigue. It’s nice to know apparently everyone does this.

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Everyone thinks their battle is worse than the one the next person is fighting. I’ve been dealing with a lot of “the grass is always greener on the other side” feelings. I miss being a student, and I miss the flexibility of a retail schedule. But when I really think about it, I was just as stressed out then as I am now. It’s sort of my default temperament, and no matter what I do or where I go I will continue to be anxious.

Sometimes I get jealous of my dad when he tells me he is going to “take it easy and catch up on reading.” He takes a day off from his typical day of grading about seven assignments, paying bills and making a trip to Lowes or Publix. That’s about as busy as a day gets for him. Of course he put in his time when he was my age. I’m sure he won’t like my mocking him here, but really he’s got all the time in the world and I dream of the things I would do if I were him.

I wonder about how we got here to the fast paced, always rushing lifestyle. I’ve heard Americans take less breaks and vacation than most European countries. We have less paid vacation and less maternity leave, and we just work all the time. When did money become more important than living life? I guess when money became essential to being able to do anything.

I feel like it’s caused us as a nation to be overworked and underwhelmed with our lives. We all thought we’d have something more worthwhile as we steadily push ahead in the daily grind.

I also lament for the days I never knew when people changed their profession and moved across country because things like that were accessible. When one job dried up they’d start anew. Sure, that lifestyle comes with instability, which I probably would not enjoy. The idea of it sounds nice though.

Nowadays extensive schooling and experience are requirements to be hired. Once a profession is chosen many do not have the option to change and often times professions are chosen for financial stability because their dreams cannot sustain them monetarily.

I know, really, I don’t have it that bad. I don’t have to take care of children, work all day and take classes at night like some people. I’m employed, my commute is short and I’m healthy.

Sometimes I just want people to know I actually work for a living, and I have job where I have to work strange long hours where I can always make it to your fun concerts, birthdays or football games. Commiserate with me, and I’ll commiserate with you.


Alana Norris is a reporter at The Vicksburg Post. Email her at