So today someone told me how many weeks until Christmas (I’m not going to write it here for fear of scaring you but spoiler alert, you can now count it on your fingers). I suddenly wondered where the year had gone, weren’t we just complaining about the end of the Easter long weekend?!?
It made me think about the fact that the older you get the quicker time seems to go and dare I say it the less you feel you have accomplished in the time you’ve had.
I am smack bang in the middle of the age range where everyone seems to have an opinion on what you should be doing with your life and what you should have already done. In one day I have had people (actual strangers) tell me how young I am, spring chicken, lots of gas left in the tank Yada Yada.. how I should embrace my 20’s whilst simultaneously judging me for not being grown up enough, successful enough or really not doing what they think I should be doing with my life.
Your mid to late 20’s are complicated. On one hand everyone is expecting you to own a house (not even a crappy one but an actual nice house), be successful at work and be well on your way to ruling your very own empire? Yes, they expect you to have dollars in the bank with more than one bank account and a serious significant other but don’t forget to be “developing your identity” (Who else doesn’t get the idea that single = why? Is there something wrong with you, married = don’t you know how to be your own person?) Whilst the rest of the population tell you to enjoy your youth, travel, explore, you have plenty of time and don’t worry about all that other jazz. What’s a girl to do?
Even when you are able to do some of the things on “The List”. That list being titled: How to adult and be perceived as successful, people still don’t think you did it right. And believe me I have tried! I am the person with the five year plan. I have written this list multiple times over, so for me it wasn’t just hypothetical.
Still I received criticism. I have been told that we made a poor choice buying a property such as the one we currently reside in, that I should live in a nice house in town not a run-down place without a proper bathroom roof. That I married far too young and must not know how to be by myself. Apparently I should have spent the last 5 years living out of a van backpacking through South America, be fluent in multiple languages, have a Kickstarter campaign, met and married someone in a week but have a really *strong relationship* – what does that even mean, like are we suppose to lift weights together?.. Apparently I am also suppose to now be planning children, remebering to send my sponsor child money and thinking about further education and don’t forget I STILL should have at least a few thousand in the bank for savings and know the bouncers name at the most popular club in town.
It’s a hard line to walk – when are you too old to go dancing and drinking twice a week but not old enough to be taken seriously at an investment seminar. Why are you looked down upon for having kids too young, marrying too young but then judged for “waiting too long” a split second later?
As I pondered what I had achieved this year I realised I had actually done something big- I had decided not to care what others thought about me and have become far more accepting of where I am in life. I am throwing out The List.
This year I have gone on trips and made amazing friends without first comparing their lives with mine and I spent money on a whim to do it (tick in the against column for not being financially responsible.. I know old habits die hard that list is permanently in my brain. I promise after this blog it’s gone). I had worked long hours and achieved some great things at work and worn sparkly kids shoes when doing the aforementioned cool work stuff (footloose and fancy free and making big decisions, tick for multitasking). I had gone out drinking and dancing on consecutive nights and still mowed the lawn and cleaned the house the next day because really… we all know the true meaning of adulting successfully is having a clean house and a manicured lawn. I had finally (with the help of my voice of reason aka the husband) got on track to renovate our house. I believe that’s a big tick in the ‘grown up’ column – the house will soon be a nice one folks!
So to all the people in their 20’s or even 30’s out there – Don’t worry, don’t compare and if I have learnt anything this year it’s that it is perfectly ok to want to get white girl wasted on Friday, spend your Saturday re-evaluating your super, insurances and paying your speeding fine followed by a marathon of Vampire Diaries. Spend Saturday night with a good book and a glass of red and Sunday fixing your front fence whilst planning a 3 week holiday backpacking in Cambodia and thinking you might have to use sick days for leave at work to do it and not caring.
You can do whatever you want- people might judge you (me included) but it doesn’t actually matter. You are an adult just as much of the rest of us and our failures and successes are what make us who we are. Own your life decisions. Everyone is on their own journey, love them for it, judge them silently (I mean I could rant about not judging others but we are all guilty of it and come on, admit it, it’s half the fun, just do it nicely and keep your opinions to yourself) and MOST IMPORTANTLY stay true to your own path 😉
Over and out.
P.S. For those interested in my pledge to trade one thing a week for a whole year. It is going really well and today was an extra special trade with some homemade honey mead given to me. I cannot wait to try it.