You still have so many years ahead of you
By Jessica Berget, Editor-in-Chief
They say you’re only as old as you feel. With the number of young, twenty-something adults who lament about turning another year older, I’m concerned some people are feeling older than they actually are.
Many people become depressed about getting older. To some, getting closer to the 30s is a big cause for anxiety because they may feel they should have your life figured out by then. Yet, you have years ahead of you to worry about getting older. Let’s be honest, no one has their lives completely figured out by age 30, or by any specific age. Being in your 20s is hardly old at all to most standards, unless we lived in the Middle Ages where 30 was the average life expectancy—thankfully we are past that point of history.
If you think about it, being in your mid to late twenties is not old at all. The average life expectancy in Canada is 82 years old. For the purpose of this argument, let’s say that everyone lives to this age. By 25 you still have more than 50 years ahead of you. That’s like turning 25 again twice plus five more years. Putting this in perspective, your mid-twenties don’t seem so old, does they?
Mid-twenties may seem old to some people, but that’s only because the teenage years are not far behind. It may sound depressing to think back on these days and realize that they’re all past you now, but instead of being sad about leaving the past, we should look toward the future.
Some people might see getting older as the end of their youth, but one should look at it as the beginning of middle age—and being middle-aged has its perks. You’ll most likely be further in your career path than you are now, you may be getting out of school (or going back into it, depending on what you plan to do), you could be getting a house or apartment soon, getting married or having kids, or at least planning to do so. It also means you’ll have more responsibility, you’ll be wiser, have more experience, and possibly more power. Doesn’t that sound like fun?
By calling yourself old at such a young age, it implies you’re ready to settle with life. It’s not you that’s old, it’s your mindset. It suggests that being old isn’t fun or not something to look forward to, but it should be. Why not be excited to see where life will take you in five, ten, or even twenty years? We should all look forward to getting older and seeing where our lives take us. Complaining and worrying about getting older is not productive.
I think some people have the notion that the older you get the more boring you become, but this is hardly the case. I also think that people feel the older they get the more they should have figured out. The responsibility they assume they need to have adds to their age anxiety, but these things take time. You can still be fun and childish when you’re older and you can still fuck up and make mistakes. Your 20s are not the only time in your life to learn valuable lessons and make mistakes, so don’t worry about getting older and feeling you need to be more responsible.
Stop complaining about being old—you have so many more fulfilling years ahead. Just think about when you’re 40 wishing you could be in your 20s again. Appreciate and have fun with being a young adult while you can—because you aren’t getting any younger.