Jul 14, 2009

Why I'm not excited about turning 25

Star Wars cupcakesSo my 25th birthday is just around the bend, and I have to say...I'm not looking forward to it at all. And no, this has nothing to do with the fact that I'm getting ever closer to wrinkles and gray hair and losing my "sweet young thang" status. Although I did hear someone recently put sweet young thangs firmly in the 24 and under demographic, and I cringed...just a little.

No. I'm not excited about turning 25 because it means I'm one year further along in life, and I still don't really seem to have developed the sense of self and direction I assumed that I would develop sometime before now. I'm 25 years old, and there are still a million things I haven't done, things I feel like I should have done and planned to do, but somehow never got around to doing. I'm 25, and I'm getting closer to a lot of the you're-a-grown-up-now deadlines that everyone seems to think I should be hitting (marriage, home, babies, etc.), but am not—not even close.

I'm not excited about turning 25 because, I thought 25 would feel a certain way, and I definitely don't feel the way I thought I'd feel at 25. It's the whole disparity between perception and reality thing that's got me kind of down. Where is my magical transformation into grown-up-ness? Why haven't I suddenly become all those things I thought grown-ups were supposed to be?

And, yeah, maybe it is just a little unfair that instead of all the wisdom and maturity and zen I was supposed to achieve at 25, I'm just as confused as I was at 23, only now I do have gray hairs and laugh lines and a metabolism that's disappearing faster than the polar ice caps.

But really...I just don't feel like I'm 25, even with the gray hairs. I still feel young, and not just in the bad ways. I still get super giddy and excited over the silliest things, and I can be really, really goofy. I still like wearing my pajamas, pretty much all the time, and have yet to adapt to a less comfortable but more professional wardrobe. Yeah, I've failed to become a sophisticated woman of the world, but at the same time, I've also got all this other great stuff going on, even if the world seems to be telling me it's time to stamp those tendencies out. I don't want to stamp those tendencies out, though. I don't want to get a year older, gain all of these new "adult" traits, but then be expected to lose some of the fun stuff of being young.

Maybe this is why I'm failing to become the grown-up I've always thought people were supposed to become: I just really like being young. Or...maybe this is why women have been so reluctant to admit their own age for so long. It has nothing to do with the shame of growing older, and everything to do with still feeling young inside—and not at all like what you thought you should feel when you reached a certain age.

18 comments:

  1. Aww don't feel sad about turning 25. Seriously. For me, my whole life changed when I was 25, moving down to Chicago. Don't knock it just yet.

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  2. 25 seems like a big milestone until you get there and realize that everyone around you is as clueless as you are--they just hide it differently.

    but early happy birthday in case i forget.

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  3. 25 is just one more than 24 so don't worry! If you feel young then you always will be. One of my relatives in law is turning 80 soon and she is living more than so many people our ages - she reads, travels, has so many friends and really lives life to the full. I think that sometimes we're so caught up in how and where our lives *should be* that we don't relax and enjoy them - I'm working on that one myself...

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  4. Enjoy 25!! I didn't mind it so much but I cried when I hit 27, because that's late 20's. I think it's how old you FEEL that matters.

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  5. I recently turned 24 and I'm not going to lie, I'm dreading my next birthday. I know it's all in my head but I feel like turning 25 means you have to start really being an adult; that you can't blame things on your youth or get away with stupid things because your young, or blame silly mistakes on your age. All things that I for sure do now lol.

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  6. I think your can insurance will go down :) hope you have a good birthday

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  7. Haha! 25 was always my golden age. Being younger, I figured, by 25, I would have everything finally ahead of me. I'd be out of college, starting a career, maybe have met someone I plan to marry, figured out what I wanted to do with my life, had good friends - the 9 yards. Now, being in my late 25th year, I am trying to figure out whether I am there or not. I am still in college, still not quite sure what I am going to do with my life, have met an awesome girl who is in no way ready to get married... But, I feel like I am on the precipice of it all though. :)

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  8. I feel the same way...and I just turned 40.

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  9. i feel the same :(

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  10. Am gonna turn 25 tomorrow,, for some reasons am feeling low too.....
    could be the 25th year itch.

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  11. I am right there with you.. I'm turning 25 in a week and I am having some anxiety. I know it is all in my head and probably result of watching too many movies, but I really thought I'd be somewhere else by now. I think I was closer to my ideal 25 when I was 22 than I am now. My life is completely different and I think I did it backwards. I wasn't happy, though.. so that counts for something. I feel a shift, though.
    I wish there was a modern rite of passage to mark this besides an overwhelming uncertainty.. haha

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  12. well said. im not the only one out there i guess with these feelings!

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  13. Boo! It's not fair... I feel like being young is part of who I am! I've never wanted to grow up, always tried to live in the moment, and I look much younger then 24, (a lot of work to do this avoid the sun! Use retinol) ... I feel like I'm being dragged into adulthood kicking And screaming! All these younger versions of young and pretty popping up... It isn't fair is it... It only lasted such a short time and then slowly but surely you start to fade...who am I anymore if I'm not the young girl I have been my whole life? I wish I could hide in 24 somewhere... Somewhere the age monster will never find me

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  14. I'm turning 25 soon and I totally feel what you're feeling. It's like you realize all these things that you should have realized when you were younger. But I feel it's never to late to achieve what you have on your mind. Good luck!

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  15. i jus turned 25 today, and I feel you. Loved your post

    but I agree; it's more how you feel, and we shouldnt let a number define us

    all the best x

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  16. time waits for no man or woman, but u can still be young at heart.i think that just because you're 25 doesnt mean u cant goof around and have fun. its not just u, everyone's getting older, if that makes u feel any better. my bday coming up in about a week, and ill be 25. its hard to believe..plus i look so young, and i dont feel any different. but im just gonna enjoy the moment. at least i get to c 25, my friend just died and he didnt make it past 23.happy belated bday

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