I am almost 28. Okay, in 2 and a half months, but even so, it feels like it’s right around the corner. And I’m starting my countdown to The Beginning of The End of My 20s now because if I don’t, I’ll be 28 without having thought about the number and the meaning behind the number at all, and will be completely depressed about it. Why does 28 matter? Well, it’s rapidly nearing the end of what feels like it should be the best time of my life. Young. Single. Urban. Skin still mostly intact in all the places it ought to be. However, at the end of the day, none of these things truly contribute toward this so-called “best time of my life” because I still feel strongly as though I’m not quite where I “should” be at this age. And most of where I “should” be is based on what I perceive to be the greater successes of my similarly-aged friends. So, in essence, I am just trying to keep up with the Joneses. Or the Rodriguezes, or Shannons, or Halls, or any of my other real-life Joneses who have done rather well for themselves, if you ask me.
I know it’s all perception – I have quite a number of positive things going on in my life that I AM grateful for, and that make me very happy. But I so want to be the laughing girl in photos enjoying every moment of an abundant life with friends surrounding me and a circle of people who thrive to be around me and my energy. I want to look back through the memoirs I’ve kept through the years and smile and weep, and currently I feel as though there are several years of my 20s which are completely devoid of truly great memories, which makes me panic about the time I have left in which to truly enjoy being young. I always wonder: do my friends wish for less than I, or is it simply that my expectations for myself are more than I can hope to achieve? Are the Joneses more content with the twists and turns that life gives them? I think the latter, and that is a serenity that I can only hope to find within myself.
And so I am counting down the days until I turn 28, focusing from this point forward on making the last two years of my 20s truly amazing and memorable. At the end of the day, it’s all in my hands to make it so, and the challenges I have to overcome are only those in my own mind. Keeping up with the Joneses? No thank you. I’ll just focus on keeping up with me.