Two days from now the first quarter century of my life will have slipped from under me, I will be 26 years old; candles will be blown, wishes will be made and another numerical digit is ticked off the completed to-do list. Questions inevitably dart round my mind. Have I done enough? Am I living? What regrets do I have? Is this all worth it?
Truth be told I’ve spent, probably most of, or at least the majority of my troublesome twenties dealing with ultimately, myself. The teenage years seemed to linger, I wasn’t ready to grow up and be an adult, to accept responsibility for myself, my actions or my state of mind. Living in a fairy tale that maybe someone else would just do it for me; living a myth that I would wake up and be that dreamlike confident young woman that I had daydreamed of pretty much all my life.
But in the past eighteen months to two years I slowly began to wake. There was no Prince to kiss me, nor did I really want one. As Carrie Bradshaw once said; “did you ever think that maybe we’re the white knights, and we have to save ourselves?” Is it unreasonable to hide away until you feel ready, and at what point does hiding become abandoning your heart.
This past year I stepped out of my comfort zone, and as I did the world unraveled around me, a testament that you can never be ready to change and you can never rely on your surroundings to stay the same when you really need them to. Your pillars of support come and go, you yourself become a different person in times of despair and fear, sometimes for the better and sometimes for the worst. Only in the past year, maybe even six months, has my change become something to feel proud of.
For some the twenties are youth, fun, love and laughter, adventure and being able to act out all those fantasies you once did as a young adult. For some, myself included, the twenties are difficult, scary, a mess and in general you feel like a scribble scripted to paper by a disillusioned fed up bored child. Your period of shedding grey feathers for crisp white ones take a bit longer, and only as time passes do you realise that maybe it’s not all that abnormal to find yourself struggling to become an adult, to accept responsibility and to realise the only person who is going to save yourself, is you.
What would I say to my sixteen year old self? Be more sensible? Save more money? Speak up for yourself more? Don’t be so judgmental to throw away valuable friendships? In a perfect world maybe, but who would I be now if I hadn’t made all those mistakes? I accept them, they’re my responsibility, my mess and ones I will make amends for and learn from.
It really comes down to, what do I tell myself going into the next twenty-five years? Live fiercely, love passionately, cry often, laugh religiously and immerse yourself with those who you deserve to make you happy. Become that dreamlike woman you imagined for so long, but accept ultimately you will never be her. Life is a never ending lesson, we are constantly learning and evolving with age. What it comes down to is accepting who you are over time, being aware of your impact on this world and sooner or later, you’ll be closer to a perfect realm of your own.
And again as Carrie Bradshaw once said, “the most exciting, challenging and significant relationship of all is the one you have with yourself. And if you can find someone to love the you you love, well, that’s just fabulous.”
Welcome to March everyone. And Happy Birthday to all the Spring babies.