Age doesn’t define you. Every age comes with expectations, but why lose yourself just to fulfill them? Own your age and chose what’s right for you. Because you are never too old or too young to do what you love.
too old or too young?
As long as I remember there always seemed to be something wrong with my age. When I was 14 I wasn’t allowed to wear the clothes I wanted. I generally felt too young to be taken seriously, but I thought that once I had turned 18 my life would suddenly start for real.
At the age of 18, I did feel some sense of freedom, because I moved to a city and started studying. However, I still seemed to be too young to get a real job or to travel alone.
In my 20s my self-image started blurring. I realized more and more that growing up didn’t mean that I would magically figure out what I wanted in life.
This realization caused me some confusion: Had my life already begun? Or had I missed it already?
So many people told me that the teenage years are the best time in life and that I should enjoy them as much as possible. That sounds as if the time after 21 was little more than a nostalgic shadow of youth/childhood. Were they right and I had been waiting for life to start while the best part of it was already about to end?
the magical number 25
I comforted myself with the thought that 25 is considered the peak of physical development. Until then, I thought, life would only become better. But I dreaded turning 26, because I saw it as the onset of decay.
I am now 27, and I am starting to realize that my life has always been real. Every age feels different and brings its own advantages.
So, I stopped to compare myself to people younger or older than me. I feel that I don’t have to hang around in clubs every weekend in order to feel young. It seems to me that I’ve found my ground and developed a feeling of who I really am and at the same time lost the urge to please everyone.
enjoy the way you see life at every moment
Growing up doesn’t mean that you can’t hang on to activities and things you used to love. But you may start perceiving them differently. It’s quite impossible to un-see the emptiness of rituals like going out and getting drunk or sleeping in and playing video games all day long while munching on some fruit loops.
Yes, you can still do the things you used to love as a kid or as a teen, but you will not experience them in the way you used to. When I pick up my Gameboy nowadays, I don’t feel the excitement I felt as a kid. Just the memory of it. A bittersweet taste of nostalgia. On the other hand, I’ve started to enjoy things that I didn’t care for when I was younger. Like hiking, good food and sarcasm.
when they start talking to you differently
Since I live in a German-speaking country other people let me know when they perceived me as an adult. They started talking to me in a more formal way. A distinction which doesn’t exist in modern English. However, every time I hear someone talk to me in that formal and official tone I shiver and wonder: Do I really look like a grown-up woman? I am not feeling different about myself – but on the outside, I must appear differently.
Sometimes, I feel that I could as well be the kid rolling around in the sandbox, eating grass and dirt. The beauty of this is that I am able to be both – the woman and the girl.
We are never too old to play and enjoy life to the fullest. This is the moment to do so – right now. Don’t listen to people who claim that a particular age is the best and that you will miss it for the rest of your life. That’s such a sad way of looking at our time on this earth. Instead, focus on the good you can find at any age. No matter how old or young you are – follow your dreams, build and create. Believe in your dreams and dare to be as serious or childlike as you long to be.
You are in the right place – full stop. Remember that you will never have the chance to experience life the way you are right now. So, make the most of it and live to the fullest.