If you are like me, an overthinker, you will most likely understand this question immediately. And no, the answer is a little more complicated than 22. I swear if I get a comment like that I will literally erase my existence. Anyways, for those who don’t really get what I mean, let me tell you.
What comes after 21? A question I have always asked myself since I started my anxious life. I mean for every birthday until then there has been significant. There is the actual day of your birth, which is big for obvious reasons, you’ve got 10 when you finally go into the double digits, 13 you are a teen, 17 you can learn to drive, 18 you can legally drink (in the UK), 20 you are no longer a teen, and while 21 is bigger in the USA because they can legally drink now, it is still counted as a milestone birthday around the world. But then what? Not to be morbid or anything but the next big day is your… death day. Yes, you have the 30s, 40s, 50s and so on, but that’s basically just a “well done for still breathing”. Nothing big changes in your life. It isn’t life some things become open to you that may not have been before. Except for a nursing home, or an over 50’s workout class. I mean that isn’t even a joke.
At the moment the only things I have to look forward to are the ‘level ups’ in life because when I turn 17 I can drive, when I turn 18 I can sign up for the police and legally drink, but then what? What will I look forward to doing? What will I look out the window in awe and dream of the time when I can do the same. I mean I’m sorry but I’m not looking forward to free bus cards (well, maybe a little). Life as an adult already seemed so depressing to me but now that you don’t really have any set goals, what do you have? I suppose you can always make goals of your own, but if you are unmotivated like me, it can be hard to stick to those and actually make goals that are reachable. I would only be setting myself up for failure.
I suppose it isn’t the birthday milestones that are gonna be the tragedy of life as an adult. Like I don’t find the fact that we won’t be squirming in bed on the night before our birthday to be depressing. It’s just that having something to look forward to learning and doing is kind of the only thing that gets me up in life. Even if that thing will inevitably be disappointing, it was fun to dream of it before then. For example, I always couldn’t wait to go to high school because we would learn so much more interesting and relevant stuff and I could revise which would mean I would have less time being bored (I don’t know where I got that logic from but I actually did think that) and then I got to high school and ended up having the worst experience of my life which led to being looking forward to leaving it.
Another thing I couldn’t wait for was getting a job. To earn my own money, do an interview, meet new people, have exciting experiences, to be independent. And as most things go, I ended up hating it. After the first week that amazement fizzled out and I realised that the general public is pieces of stuck up shit (I was a waitress) and the people I worked with (only a select few I suppose) were assholes who made my life hell. Make sure to check out my other post which talks more about that horror of waitressing here and here. But anyway, that was another thing that I dreamed of doing, and when it came the magic was gone. I always guessed it would happen but that didn’t make the thought of it less magical.
It’s things like that I am scared to finish. Having so many firsts, being excited to start new things, reaching milestones you thought of as a kid. I suppose there is marriage and kids if that is what you want but after that what is there? Retirement? I really don’t want to end up looking forward to that because I want a job I love and enjoy waking up to every day. But if I don’t look forward to retirement then what can I dream about? Yes, I know this is a depressing fucking topic and I feel like a bunch of adults are gonna read this like “I don’t even have a fucking clue” and spin-off into an existential crisis, but it is just a genuine question. Like just because I can’t see anything important, doesn’t mean that there isn’t because I could be wrong. Maybe having a clean slate for your future and being able to do anything LEGAL that you want is freeing. I don’t know? But at the moment I am 16 and I don’t have many milestones left and that terrifies me. A lot of things scare me to be fair but this one is harder to disprove.
So am I wrong? Adults, please do tell me that I am. Are birthdays just not important and now it is just what happens in between? I really do hope I am wrong and I guess age is just a number but also a fucking important number as well. I think I might make another post on that because yes age is a number, but it isn’t JUST a number is it? Oh well, comment down below if you would like a post about that because I actually just came u with a few good ideas for that. Follow so that you get notified when I post about that in the near future and like if you enjoyed this page of existentialism. I hope you have a great day, stay safe and stay yourself PERIODT.
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