I'm really looking forward to this "independence" thing reaching steady-state.
The latest in the saga: since I transformed my brokerage account from a custodial ("with my parents") one to a normal ("I'm an adult now, really") one and immediately thereafter changed the investments to the ones I wanted to make, I'm now in control of my finances for real, and have been for about a year. However, since the stuff I sold (in order to make the investments that I wanted) was purchased before this grasp of independence, I don't have records of those purchases - which means the government lists me as having acquired those assets for $0.00, which means it thinks I made a heck of a lot more profit than I actually did, which means it levies taxes accordingly, which means I've been staring at my 2009 tax return for the past few days trying to figure out why my income was double the amount of money I actually saw last year. (Answer: it wasn't, but I need to call my brokerage - and my parents - to get proof it wasn't.)
Folks in my county have an extra few weeks to file taxes due to the floods that came through earlier this year, so I'm not actually rushed/stressed/going-to-be-late, but... still, it's annoying. I'm hoping to clear up most of the remaining financial stuff before my birthday this year so that I can spend my year-of-being-24 extricating my medical records from the same kind of sink and setting up my own doctor/dentist/audiology/etc routines. I'm taking care of myself fiscally first, and then physically - and then... we'll see what's next. It's going to be a while.
I think I'll be able to reach financial independence steady-state around April 2012 - do whatever cleanup remains during 2010, file those taxes in April 2011, and have 2011 as my first full year of Actually Having Everything. I know my financial situation's going to change with grad school coming up, but I'll know all of it, have all of it, be able to easily track and keep up with all of it. It should not be this hard. I'm glad my job is on my terms; I'm glad I'm going to grad school on my terms. I love being able to do stuff on my own terms; it is a luxury that I will never take for granted.
In the meantime, as my mother keeps reminding me when I call home, by the time she and my father were my age, they were engaged (actually, my dad was married when he was my age, and I'm a few months younger than my mom was at the time of her wedding). Hint hint. My father does the numbers, money-wise, for both my parents. Hint.
That's nice. But I'm going to learn how to be a grown-up person by myself first.