1. You still sometimes very seriously say, “Are we going to get into trouble?”
It’s a real fear! Every little move you made growing up was scrutinized by your peers, your teachers, and the good Lord so you CONSTANTLY wonder if you’re going to get reprimanded for doing something. Especially if it’s maybe a little bad…or someone could potentially spin it in that way.
2. You find yourself instinctually doing the “finger test” with your skirt length.
You’re a grown adult woman, but you still get nervous that your hemline is too ~*scandalous*~. In your core you know it’s not a problem and no one is going to send you home for a dress code violation, but it still goes through your head EVERY time.
3. No matter how old you are or what position you find yourself in, you always have weird issues with authority.
You just do not (and probably will never) have a totally healthy relationship with authoritative figures. They were always looming over you growing up so now, you still have residual fear of someone telling you what to do in the back of your mind all the time.
4. You know exactly which bars and which gas stations don’t card.
Because of all the times when you wanted to get wine coolers and Swishers to smoke behind the gym, you know exactly where to go should you ever need a bottle of wine and find yourself sans identification. That kind of info is the kind you never forget.
5. Everything you learned about sex you learned on your own.
There’s abstinence only sex ed, and then there’s “we just don’t teach this” sex ed. So everything you learned about the birds and the bees you either Googled, heard in salacious whispers at recess, or read about under cloak and dagger out of an Encyclopedia. And then you IMMEDIATELY ran to your friends with your new found knowledge to tell them all about it.
6. But you got A LOT of things wrong.
Yeah…the guy doesn’t pee inside of the girl and you can’t get pregnant from orgasming. (Or some other completely incorrect info about sex that you believed wayyyyyy longer than you care to admit.)
7. Those dreaded run ins with people from high school? Yeah, never happens.
Your graduating class was BARELY 20 people and anyone who didn’t end up in ministry is either in Med School or out of the country. Not only was it a small class, but if you don’t run in the same circles you really don’t keep in touch. Needless to say you don’t see the good ol’ class of ’08 out at the bars too often.
8. Sometimes getting dressed in the morning genuinely stresses you out.
While you definitely dig being able to be original and express yourself, for YEARS you knew exactly what you had to wear Monday through Friday. There isn’t enough money in the world to make you want to put on a pleated skirt or tie a damn tie every morning ever again. But there was a sort of simplicity to not having to think about your clothes, and you sometimes miss it.
9. You thought going to political rallies for field trips was totally normal.
Your field trips were less “let’s go look at art” and more “let’s go support this politically right wing person who compares abortion to genocide”. It was weird.
10. Being called “different” growing up was definitely NOT a compliment.
Different was synonymous with “not doing what you SHOULD be” and you were ostracized or absolutely gossiped about should that label have been deemed yours. Whether you like your originality or not, it wasn’t something that the masses appreciated.
11. Seemingly normal trends were considered “of the Devil” and you were not allowed to like them.
Examples include Pokemon, Harry Potter, Twilight, and God FORBID you asked to watch The Craft.
12. Even if it was totally innocent, any sort of physical contact was frowned upon.
You could have been in 2nd grade and just pecked your first crush on the cheek and you’d get a lecture about how “feelings of the flesh” were not acceptable. You were basically told to internalize all physical affection because giving into it was wrong and if you stumbled, you need to repent. Even if, yes, you were only in the 2nd grade.
13. You HEAVILY edit yourself in front of your “elders” as a sign of respect.
While you may be your own person now and not care about following rules as much, you still don’t feel like being yelled at for everything when you’re around people who still do abide by those guidelines. Thus your swearing goes away, you cover up your tattoos, and you bow your head with the best of them.
14. You can zone out like no other.
Church gets boring, assemblies get boring, reading about Adam and Eve for the umpteenth time gets really effing boring. You’ve perfected the art of the “I’m still listening but actually thinking about that episode of The O.C. instead” face. Someone could (and has) scream about hellfire and damnation and you’d be just picturing Adam Brody in your happy place. But they’d be none the wiser.
15. You’d rather die than wear khakis, plaid, or polos ever again.
Burn all the tartan. BURN IT.