For some of us, adjusting from being an adolescent to being a full-fledged adult is a bit of a struggle. With adulthood comes the expectation of checking certain boxes, but not everyone finds that path an easy one to follow.
Dutch illustrator Marloes De Vries has used art as a way to communicate her thoughts and feelings since she was a young girl. So, it comes as no surprise that as she faces the challenges of adulthood, she'd want to illustrate some of her experiences. She shares her "trying to adult" comics on her Instagram for others to realize that they're not alone.
"To be honest, I felt like the odd duck out many times. When I look around, I see people doing all the things they're 'supposed' to do, like buying houses, getting married, having babies. I don't feel that urge, yet," De Vries told A Plus. "My friends and family often joke about how I'm just 5 years old in my head. And I agree! I love it, though, I really enjoy the life I have now. So I started drawing these comics to put things in perspective, mainly for myself. I posted them online and then I realized so many other people feel the same way!"
Most of De Vries's illustrations are based on real experiences she'd had with friends, but sometimes they're inspired by conversations she's overhead. "I secretly try overhearing other people at the bus stop, for example," she said.
Creating and sharing her artwork has made De Vries realize that she's in good company. "You might think you're the only one. but there are so many people that can relate to how you're feeling, or what you're thinking," she said. "It has made me feel stronger and gave me confidence!"
De Vries has built a following more than 40,000 people on Instagram and the comments section of each of her posts is filled with praise. She hopes others will learn from her experiences and find positivity in them.
"I've been rejected many times. Teachers told me I couldn't draw well enough, I got picked on in school really bad, people weren't always that nice to me. The one thing I really wanted to do is tell stories and draw pictures, and I [stuck] to that, no matter how big the setback was. I honestly think that if [you've] got the willpower to reach a goal, you can get there if you're willing to put in the effort," she said. "I hope people will listen to their hearts a bit more, do what feels right instead of going along what they think is expected of them."
You can check out some of her illustrations below: