Hi. I’m smack-bang in the middle of my twenties, and I have no idea what I want out of life.
When I was little, your mid-twenties was a whole different ballgame. That’s when “stuff” happened, you know? My parents, and most of my friends’ parents, had all us kiddies in their twenties, and pretty much all of them were married to boot. They had houses, proper jobs, big cars and their lives were pretty much sorted. It was work Monday to Friday, dinner on the table by six o’ clock and go to the local pub on the weekends. Lather, rinse, repeat.
But us lot? We’re a whole new generation, and we’re doing things very differently.
Growing up, I thought I knew exactly what I wanted and, more to the point, I thought I knew exactly when it would happen. I’d fall in love with my childhood sweetheart, get a good job, be married and have kids by 25 and live the rest of my days in my three bedroom, semi-detached house with a garden, two cats and a cocker spaniel.
I don’t know when I changed my mind about – well, all of it. Except the cats and cocker spaniel. But here I am, 25 years old, with no childhood sweetheart (my boyfriend is almost six years older than me so that’d be weird..), no house, no plans for kids and only just about to start my first ever job that actually leaves me with a few scraps after rent.
These days, it’s almost frowned upon to do any of those things in your twenties. With most of my social circles, if you’re walking down that aisle or sharing sonograms even at the age of 25 – when most of our parents were doing, or had done, exactly that – you can expect some raised eyebrows at the very least.
The weirdest part is, most of those raised eyebrows are from us! I’m one of the worst, absolutely recoiling at the idea of babies, feeling completely baffled by the world of mortgages, lying awake at night bricking it about having a “proper job”, and getting queasy with anxiety at the mere thought of a marriage proposal.
I think I might want some of those things. Maybe. One day. But the problem is, if I don’t want them now – at the age I always thought I would, and the age our parents did – when will I want them? Unlike my younger self, I’m clueless about what I want. And if I don’t even know what I want, how the hell am I meant to know when it’ll happen?!
I guess the truth is, I don’t. I don’t know when these things will happen, or if they ever will. Our parents think we’re at the age where we should be getting our lives together and they’re expecting those sorts of milestones from us, while our peers think we’re still way too young. It’s very confusing, it’s a lot of pressure, and it leaves me feeling like I know very little about my future.
But what I do know is this: I like my life right now. And for me, for now, that’s enough.