I've noticed lately that it seems everything I do in terms of adult responsibility involves higher stakes than it used to. Parenting is harder and more important, job responsibilities involve more people and fiscal outcomes, and even things I volunteer for like being an HOA board member involve bigger things. I was thinking about this and had a Talking Heads moment, wondering, well, how did I get here?
With the higher stakes, everything seems more complicated. I often ask myself if things really have to be this way. I don't have any answers to that question, but my general thinking about all of it has also evolved rather quickly. Instead of feeling wholly overwhelmed by it all, I'm actually feeling like, I've got this. Life experience has been preparing me for it, and that experience is totally valuable. Time and experience are insanely valuable, and I've never quite appreciated that the way that I do now. Indeed, you don't know what you don't know, but there's some point I can't define where that self-awareness combined with what you do in fact know tips the scale in your favor. I think I'm getting closer to that point, and it's an energizing feeling.
I think I would stop short in saying that "it" gets easier. Maybe it does if you can retire, or when your kid is out into the adult world, or you stop volunteering for your HOA. I will say that you're better equipped to meet the challenges of life as time and experience are acquired.
It also helps to be at peace with the idea that maybe you never truly "arrive" anywhere. You're always in various degrees of winning and failure. Maybe that's when you level up.