Last week I turned 25 years old. How did that happen? Only two minutes ago I was panicking about turning 24 and getting my life together, and in what feels like no time at all a year has flown by!
In all honesty, turning 25 didn’t bring the crippling anxiety that my brain had promised it would, instead I was greeted by a dull sense of panic that was much easier to deal with. This got me thinking about why 25 feels like a massive turning point for me. Is it because I have to check the 25-30 option when filling out forms? Or that people keep pointing out that I’m halfway to 50? Or maybe it’s the realisation that if I auditioned for the X Factor I would be entered into the ‘last chance’ 25 and Over category. In reality, it is probably none of these outside influences causing my heart to pick up pace. It’s all me and my little brain that isn’t on my side right now.
I remember being 13 years old and just starting high school, being surrounding by grownups who try and scare you into taking charge of your future. They tell you how important GCSE’s are, and that being a fully functioning and independent adult is just around the corner. I spent years combating this ridiculous notion by decorating my bedroom with as much Harry Potter memorabilia as possible and refusing to drink alcohol until I was legally allowed. I didn’t even have my first kiss until I was 18. Anything that most kids want to do to feel more mature, I moved away from entirely.
I mean, I am still well known as the girl who likes Harry Potter (I never managed to shake that particular obsession) but people don’t call me Naive anymore, so I guess I have grown. Being 13 or 15 makes 25 seem like a lifetime away. Those people have it together. They might not make much money but they have a house and a cute boyfriend and are on the path to reaching their dreams. Of course, I knew of the ‘failures’ who still live with their parents and have a job that they don’t really want, but that was NEVER going to be me.
And yet, here I sit, watching friends with a packet of biscuits at the house that I currently share with my Mum. I have spent the day thinking about work tomorrow at the local convenience store, after studying Drama at University and swearing I’d be a professional actress by now. So I guess I turned into one of those ‘failures’ I had envisioned in my head?
No. I’m not a failure. I don’t think anyone fails their 20’s. From what I have learnt in the past 5 years, everyone feels like they are doing things wrong at this age. The issue with social media is that everyone looks like they are having a better time than you, but that isn’t always true. I have a friend who has been living in New Zealand for a year now and I am crazy jealous of her life. But even she has told me how worried she is about finding a job when she gets home, as she has no idea what she wants to do for the rest of her life.
I have tried for the past week to give myself little goals to ensure I have something to be proud of. I could write a blog post, redecorate my room, audition for a local play, or even go for a run. It doesn’t really matter how life changing my success is, so long as I actually got on with it didn’t make an excuse. Maybe that is the secret to a relaxing 25th year? Well, I guess I will find out. And I will be sure to keep you posted.
Thank you for reading!