I'm in my 20s.
I'm 23, I have mild depression (a far cry from my prior diagnosis of "severe") and social anxiety, and I don't know what the fuck I'm doing.
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And that's okay.
(follow the jump for more)
The movies, I'm learning, lie to us. They show us people in their late 20s who have it all together. These people are climbing the corporate ladder toward their dream job, they're in stable relationships, know how to do their hair in less than an hour, and live on their own. But they don't show you what they looked like right after college, at a real life job they aren't formally prepared for, paying too much for an apartment they share with old college buddies and some weirdo they found on Craigslist. We all know about broke college students living on ramen. But what about 2 years post college, where that lifestyle isn't even ironically funny or Romantic anymore? Nope. Doesn't make it into the movies. Why? Because it's boring and depressing and - wait for it - no one cares. You did a semester in Budapest and have a degree in women's' studies and work at a marketing firm? No one cares.
What does all of this have to do with an evil blender and the Charleston? Let's back up to a week ago. I got home from work after seeing off my parents and the condo was silent. The mailbox keys were hanging on a hook, the dishwasher was empty and the TV was turned off. My first day of 5 weeks living without my uncle was blissful and quiet. He's gone to Nevada to spend time with his father. It's not forever, it's not even for the summer (as previously promised...), but at the rate things were going I would've settled for a long weekend. For three beautiful days I cleaned, cooked, watched movies, and listened to music downstairs while I did so.
Then, on Sunday night, I was hit with both a fever and a migraine (how evil is that!?). By Tuesday morning I dragged myself to urgent care and wound up hooked up to a fluid drip IV with a freaked out PA threatening to hospitalize me if I couldn't stay hydrated. I was also given prescriptions to manage my acute tonsillitis/might be strep throat/if it doesn't go away we'll test you for mono. *sigh*
At my follow up appointment the next day, the doctor recommended fruit smoothies to aid in hydration. The theory was that cold, smooth purees would be easier on the throat and less painful to swallow. Here we meet the evil blender.
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Everything was going fine: the ice had blended, the fruit and yogurt were beautifully pureed, and I was just adding a touch of honey when the motor sputtered, turned itself off, and started to smoke. And when I removed the pitcher from the motor-base, some of the almost-smoothie spilled on the floor and as I stood in my kitchen crying I had the following revelation:
I have a shitty second-hand blender.
I have to be a grown up,
clean up the mess,
and stop the smoking so it doesn't catch fire.
I also realized that it is perfectly fine if, as a 23 year old woman, I let myself be completely miserable when I'm seriously ill, as long as I continue to take care of business (such as dealing with demonic blender fire hazards).
Ultimately, it sunk in - every tiny article or blog post I've read about how your 20s probably won't be awesome at first. In fact, I'm learning that most of us don't really have a clue what we're doing, we're just playing at adulthood until it becomes natural. (Except for my mother; I'm pretty sure she was born an adult and just grew into it.)
And this brings us to the "Roaring Twenties" portion of my post. Sorry folks, no Charleston tonight. Also, this is not the part where I share some uplifting insight as to how I'm going to totally rock being in my super-shitty early 20s. Uh-uh. Not gonna happen. What I am telling myself is that the fact that so far my "roaring 20s" are shitty and I don't know what I'm doing and I feel like a 6 year old lost at the mall is OKAY. It's okay that I feel this way. I am allowed to be validated in these messed up emotions.
Even more important than it being okay that I feel lost is that I'm trying to figure it all out.
So I guess my 20s will be more like this saying:
Courage doesn't always roar. sometimes it is the whisper saying, "I will try again tomorrow."
So welcome to your 20s, kids. Enjoy your stay and remember: If you don't have a clue, it's okay.
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PS: I have since purchased a new blender. It is not evil and works beautifully.