Growing up, I always thought I would have life figured out once I turn 20. Well can I just say, My expectations were not met, not at all. Coming in to my twenties I was depressed. I was depressed because I set myself up for failure. When I turned 18, I planned out my entire life, and those plans were suppose to be completed by the time I was 22. Well, I am currently 20 1/2 and I’ve only completed one semester of school, I have $15 in my savings, I still live with my mom and I haven’t met my soulmate yet.
It amazes me how there wasn’t a single adult who told me that I didn’t have to rush, that I could take my time. You ever notice the first question an adult asks a child? “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I feel this question holds so much. Because each year an adult asks a child, its bound to change, and everytime a child changes the adult would laugh and tell them, “I wonder what’s it going to be next year?” At least for me, it was a lot of pressure. My entire life I only had three dream jobs, a teacher, a writer and a model.
The first thing that comes to mind when someone says “grown up” is twenties. Not early twenties, late twenties, just twenties. Now that I’m here, and i’ve only accomplished 2 grown up things, I feel like I disappointed my younger self.
Everyday, I have to remind myself that I’ve only been 20 for 232 days, barely a whole year. I’m lucky I completed something in my twenties. It took my really long time to realize that I didn’t need to have everything figured out. And ever since that realization, I now take my time with everything. Once I reach that bridge, that’s when I will deal with it
For example, I am 20 years old and I don’t know how to drive. I use to be embarrassed by that, but now, I honestly don’t care. I am in no rush to get my license and learning how to drive isn’t as essential to me. Once I get my license I can already see the bills piling up for me, insurance, gas, and maintenance. Like I said before, once I reach that bridge, that’s when I will deal with it.
Now on to school, I chose to take a year off for a really good reason. At first I thought it was because of money, but if I was being 100% honest, I wasn’t ready for school. I was scared out of my mind. The way my high school teachers would speak about college professors, I never wanted to go. I took that year to work and I’ve learned a lot, I’ve even managed to deal with my social anxiety when being around a group of people. When I finally started school I was prepared and I was very happy I took a break. Now I’m ready to finish off school and get a degree for my career.
I do say not to rush, but you never want to keep pushing your plans, because the more you push your plans the least likely you’re going to complete them, ever. So I say pick a year, any realistic year. A year where you want to complete school, a year where you want to have a certain amount of money, even a year where you want to have your own apartment. As long as you set a deadline for a specific goal, I feel that you will be more successful. For me, I have a year that I plan to earn my Associates so that I can transfer and work towards my bachelors. I don’t really have a set date to earn my bachelors, because who knows if I’d want to take another break from school. All I can do right now is worry about the present while I’m still here and once that year comes I’ll work on it then.
My advice for everyone, even if you’re way out of your twenties, or not in your twenties yet, please take your time. You will stress yourself out if you set high expectations for yourself. The least you can do is expect little so that when you achieve higher than expected you will feel more confident in yourself.
Now, being in your twenties, you will really find out who your true friends are, even if that means you have to narrow it down to not having any friends at all. Throughout my life I haven’t had much friends, I had classmates and neighbors. I chose wisely with my friends. I believe that is why I never had any issues or drama with the people I called my friends. However, no matter how close you are with these people, sometimes you’re not destined to be friends with them forever. Sometimes it’s not meant to be and that’s okay. Coming into your twenties, you’re either going to be working a lot or traveling or just dealing with school. And your friends may have different plans than you, then you will get into disagreements. This is all completely okay. Even though no one is destined to be alone, it’s okay to be alone for a certain time in your life. This gives you a freedom to find out who you really are and be comfortable with that.
This category also falls into place with romantic relationships. When I was in middle school I thought I would have a relationship like Troy and Gabriella. When I turned 20, I was very disappointed. Mostly disappointed in the fact that I haven’t even had my first kiss yet. And that’s okay, but everytime I think about that, I just remember, if I’m thinking realistically, my first kiss won’t be my soulmate. So I’m not even a step closer.
Relationships are not essential for your twenties. Even though a lot of parents out there are nagging their children about getting married before they turn thirty, it is very important to take care of yourself before you jump into a relationship. It might take 5-10 years. I learned that lesson the hard way. Even after my mom, other family members, and close friends told me relationships aren’t worth it, I wanted to experience it myself and take my own word for it. It took me years to realize that they were right. I didn’t even get into a relationship yet and I learned that, not from experience, but from observation. Being the single friend I’m always giving my friends advice on their relationships and the more my friends ask me for advice the more I listen to myself. I would tell them to take a break from that relationship because clearly they have to grow along with their S.O., on their own. I listened to myself and thought, maybe I should stop thinking about getting in a relationship and grow in this specific area so that when I am in a relationship it would be easy for me to get through. As of right now, I am taking this time to grow in all areas. I even almost got into something with a guy, but there wasn’t much effort on the other end, and this made me realize that maybe it wasn’t me. Maybe it’s the guys. I am always pursuing guys who never show effort to be with me, and I thought I was the reason why I am still single. So from now on, I will stop pursuing guys and let God take the wheel and guide that special someone into my life. Someone who will show effort, someone who will support me in anything that I will do, someone who won’t just leave when I get complicated and trust me I get very complicated.
Take this from someone who’s been through it, do not rush into anything that will make you uncomfortable. Take your time and work at your own pace. And now that you’re the adult, start asking children what they want to do when they grow up, and please don’t pressure them to make a choice immediately. They won’t know for years and that’s cool. Allow them to take their time!