I read this Buzzfeed post a few days ago, and despite the myriad of “life” articles out there, this one struck quite a few (and very hilarious) chords, tickling my funny bone as I reminisced fragments of the great and not-so-great memories I tied to each year of my existence thus far.
It was true when it said that 23 was a heaping, stinking mound of crap. In my case anyway. It was, actually and quite possibly, the worst freaking age ever. It was during my 23rd year that I experienced pain unlike any other (oh yessss here comes the dramathon!), was down in the dumps with insecurity, let my issues take over my life, and I pretty much was a spilling pot of angst. Simply put, I was my angry teenage version trapped in a 23-year old body. Which isn’t really cool.
Enter 24 when things are said to “loosen up”. My friends who have already reached this Golden Age of Chill and have moved on to 25 said that 24 was a indeed good and relaxed year for them. I’m hoping they’re right!
It’s almost been a month since I turned 24, and I know life is what you make out of it and all that, but I can’t help but wonder about the truth of 24 being one of the best years. Thankfully, relatives (except for my Grandma) haven’t been asking awkward questions about me tying the knot any time soon.
It feels funny being at the last year of my early twenties, like tiptoeing on a balance beam connecting two buildings with a trampoline underneath. You either make it to the other side, or you bounce back. I guess that’s what life has been teaching me so far—that it is elastic, and that there are so many unexpected things that could throw you against the current, but in the end, you’re still moving towards somewhere even though you’re not quite sure where that place is—yet.
24, so far, has been about experiencing new things, and being aware of responsibility—as a daughter, as a citizen, and oddly, as an adult. I heard there’s a scientific explanation behind the feeling of adulthood kicking in your mid-twenties (something to do with the hypothalamus). I’m no science geek, but hey, I think there are some people who’ve felt that earlier in life, others perhaps later in life. It’s a different story for everyone.
Last week, someone pointed out that I had the problem of being too much of a dreamer. IKR. WTF. I allowed it to stew in my system because I was really affected, but I shook it off minutes later. After gooooosefrabahhh-ing the frak out of the situation, I just decided to give that person the benefit of the doubt and assume that it was phrased wrongly. (Because said person does have a difficult time when it comes to stringing words together.) But it gave me something to think about.
I thought to myself that maybe I should be more careful about my dreams. More so, the time I’m wasting just thinking of what I want to happen but not actually pursuing them. I was caught in that tangle when I was 23. Daydreaming and allowing these goals to vaporize into thin air because I was the best excuse maker in the world.
But there’s this sense of urgency that has taken over, and it’s taking a bit of adjustment on my end to realize that there isn’t really any better time than to do the things I need and want to do now. Or at least, start somewhere. I’m also learning to savor the moment instead of wallowing on being that Ideal Version of Myself that I have ever-so-often placed in a box because hanging around with so much negativity will just make me miserable.
And of course, there’s The Voice. That maleficent, sneaky voice that can be self-destructive if you allow it to consume you. I read that This Voice is an accumulation of all the negative things (from persons of authority or persons who affect us the most), and the sad part is that we allow it to bully us all the time. It’s part of my goals this year to diminish that ugly voice in my head, especially when it worms its way inside my brain and tells me that I’m not good enough to do anything that matters to me.
I still haven’t quite figured things out yet, and I think that’s absolutely fine. I know the future will be amazing and it will always turn out better than expected. But for now, I just have to “place that in my back pocket and deal with today,” as my Unka told me.
Oh, 24. So far you’ve been good. I know that there are hurdles to overcome and deserts to trek, but please, life, help me believe that I can bounce back again—better this time, knowing that I’ll be able to make it to the other side of the balance beam.