One of the first pointless birthdays we come to in life is 26. Every age before that is considered a “milestone” of some sort. Or at least I look at it that way. The worst part of turning 26 is the realization that 30 is only 4 short years away. The best part about turning 26 is, well, at least it’s not 36?
Twenties are the magical time where people can behave like adults, make adult decisions, be treated like competent humans, yet still feel fairly young. After all, your twenties come after your teens. And everyone knows that teenagers are babies so it’s like I practically stepped out of the womb yesterday. The great thing about your twenties is that you can still get away with making dumb choices without the threat of being thought of as immature. I mean, people might still think of you as immature but you’re in your twenties so what do they expect? It’s really a magical decade.
The scary part is that big events happen during these years causing people to grow up “faster”. Getting married, having kids, starting a career, going to jail (?) all start to happen around this time which is terrifying. I feel like people have started to catch on to the fact that if they prolong the road to these milestones, they won’t become an adult (or what the world thinks of as adult behavior) right away. The media has depicted the sad scenario of getting-stuck-in-a-rut-early-in-life-and-hating-yourself too many times for my generation not to take heed.
And I think that’s why people stay in school longer, getting Master’s degrees and Doctorates with the thought process of hey, students are young! People are getting married later in life and having kids in their late thirties and forties because that’s way too much responsibility for a youthful soul like mine. I understand why people do this whether it’s a conscious choice or not.
Growing up is always daunting and no one really wants to focus on the years flying by. But I’ve figured out a way to make myself extremely comfortable talking about my age. I surround myself with friends that are at least 5 years older than myself so I always feel like a true youngster.
Who, me? Oh I’m only 26.