A few years back my mom was talking to her manager about me, my schooling, or other the other things that mothers talk about their daughters. I was still in college, I believe it was the first time (my undergrad), and mom explained to her manager that I was in school and was still living at home to which her manager made some comment about me, “failing to launch.”
Even more bizarre to me was that mom decided to tell me about this conversation, or maybe it was the one and only time I went to Mom’s manager’s house with her, I don’t remember. At any rate, I stewed on this comment for days, weeks, and months. Had I really “failed to launch.” I was honestly hurt by this colloquialism. Was a failure to launch a failure at life? What had I failed at?
I was socially awkward, still am. I lived at home while I went to college, but that was more out of convenience and budget than it was because I didn’t want to move out. Hell, I felt like the ugly ducking at school because I was the only one in most of my classes that didn’t live on campus. Her words felt as tangible on my skin as a shirt and I didn’t know why they bothered me so badly.
Now I have my own house, a child, a husband that I haven’t divorced nor have plans to, two dogs, a bachelor’s degree, and a master’s degree. Even though I can’t manage to get a job in my field does that make me a failure? Have I still failed to launch? I guess my take away from this is choose your words carefully because even the most innocuous idiom can leave a physical mark.