first world countries probably are aiding to this phenom, and i know i have written about it before: Generation Y – but something really stuck with me yesterday.
My mom was telling me about something she read on twitter about how everyone considers “old” to be 15 years older than them. at 25 (no offense to this, anyone…please) 40 seems old. this resonated with me for too long, and it really got me thinking about age. at 25, i refer to things from 10 or 15 years ago and 15 years ago, i was 10…and 25 seemed ANCIENT. after some consideration (and no more math equations, i promise) i broke down what i could remember as epic age milestones.
i am starting here because you are finally in the double digits (wahoo! until you realize you are stuck here forever). 10 i feel like you finally get to choose which vegetables you are going to eat (finally set free from peas and carrots). you start riding your bike all over the neighborhood…and yes we did this before, but at 10 you can get into a little bit more trouble and cause a bigger ruckus.
10 is about third grade i guess, and third grade you start taking some serious spelling and math tests. you can either become part of the fast track or stay right on par. the school pressure starts, you begin to fall into a clique and the awkward stages commence (ive always had straight hair, straight teeth and nice skin – thank you mom & dad – and i claim my awkward stage as being my mid-twenties).
when you turn 10, your opinion starts to count. you can read a book, comprehend it and read into foreshadowing and actually know what you are talking about. at 10 someone can ask you a question and expect and honest and thought out answer. at 10, you can get the question “what do you want to be when you grow up” and not every kid is going to respond with an athlete or rock star (except i still think i am going to be a rock star)
i dont have much to say about 13. besides being a total brat and really forcing your opinion down every adult’s throat, you really learn how to leverage. “mom, i got a 95% on my spelling test, i am going to the mall and i dont care what you say!!!!!!!!!”
it may not be great leveraging, but you really get this opportunity to sharpen your skill set. i believe every 13-year-old could be a killer lawyer; the conniving and back-stabbing are at an all time high and no matter what you were wearing then, you look back at it now and cringe.
thats all i got for 13; it was emotional, included a lot of eye rolling and your parents probably hated you. next.
16 is hard. like really hard. you get all this crazy freedom but mom & dad know its hard for you to use it. sure, some older people can drive but how many of them really want to tote a car full of mouth breathers around with them? at 16 you are over the complaining and whining, you just shut up and do your homework because its easier than hearing bullshit from adults and you are most likely caring more about school and thinking about the future (gasp!)
at 16 i started living in flip flops, jeans, a tank top and a side braid – of which i am sitting typing this in the same uniform. you can figure out your style, you really have a broader perspective on a lot at 16, and unbeknownst to any 16-year-old; you really just start to get things. homework finally makes sense, schoolwork matters more, sports are way more competitive, having a job means pocket money and you get to stop asking your parents for $20 to go to the movies. financial wisdom is low but a debit card is inevitable.
i feel like 16 is where it all kind of starts. you really make that final decision of who your true friends are and which douchey guy you want to be seen with. you have the opportunity to make some really bad choices, which we all have done, and you get to finally face real consequences. i think the phrase “keep calm and carry on” fits quite well into this phase of life.
not much to say here except: drivers license. readers keep in mind, i am writing this from a jersey girl’s perspective, and we dont drive until 17. nothing much here changes from 16, except you have some shitty beat up car and a shiny piece of plastic with UNDER AGE plastered on it in big red letters.
now, go and choose a college and a life career – because that is the next step when you are a junior in high school.
be real – 18 was kind of stupid. you can vote and go to the army. what else? get accepted into college? become a coffee addict? dye your hair? get a tattoo and something pierced just to prove a point? really learn how to use e-mail…
in new jersey this is the age you can buy cigarettes. not 18 when you can get drafted, but 19…because you can make much better choices at 19.
i dont think i even need to explain this one. continue on exactly what you are doing, now its just legal (well, most of it is anyway).
quarter of a century. can you believe that? mid-twenties. a real adult. a good job, outlook e-mail and bills to pay. 22-24 were just a learning experience; trial and error really. do a lot then to learn a lot, and use all of the best practices you learned then when you turn 25.
25 has been an interesting year. i am lucky with a december birthday, so when the new year rolls around its like a total brand new beginning. i have calmed down immensely at 25, i have become level-headed and compliant. i have learned how to save my money and cook anything and everything. i have learned the joy of wearing flats. i have learned that reading a book for personal joy is just as important and my iphone.
at 25 i have learned about politics. i have learned that the history channel is not all evil (swamp people, anyone?). daily vitamins are not just limited to flinstone chewies. manicures chip, no matter what you do. the world would be a happier place if everyone just drank a latte every day. do one thing everyday for yourself, to make you happy – it really does help. smile; these wrinkles look much more distinguished than frown lines.
i have a few months before 26 and when it inevitably occurs, i will be kicked off of my moms health insurance and need to start paying a lot of money for sinus infections.
i am not really sure what to look for after 26…30? i dont understand why that is a milestone yet. i hear by 30 you are deeply grounded in your career. i hear you are looked at as a “real adult”.
i guess we will have to wait and see.