Alright. Everyone needs to chill. Last week, Facebook was exploding with "23 Things To Do Instead Of Getting Engaged Before You're 23". Now, there's a response to that called "24 Things To Do Instead of Getting Married Before You're 24". Before these two, I'm pretty sure I scrolled through about 1,529 lists a day having something to do with 20-somethings and "living life to the fullest".
I get it. As 20-somethings, we have our "whole lives ahead of us". And somehow, we find ourselves sitting, staring at a screen reading lists about what we should be doing with our lives. These lists typically contain a vaguely inspiring plan that consists traveling the world with a random stranger while eating a sleeve of Oreos, telling a joke and trying something new.
I have a few problems with this...and I may be being a bit hypocritical as I sit, staring at a screen writing a list about what we should be doing with our lives. Oh well.
Numero uno. Why all the articles about being a 20-something? What about teenagers? And kids? Are they just waiting until their twenties to be able to finally boom into their life and start exploring? I think there's an episode of Full House where one of the girls talks about graduating middle school or something and how her life is "finally starting". Danny (probably) explains not to wait for life to start because that's wasteful. He's right. It doesn't start after a graduation, or when you first move out, or when you get a job, or when you find a passion, or when you fall in love. Life started already. Get moving now. Get moving yesterday, for that matter.
Numero dos. Similar to numero uno. What about the 30-somethings and 40-somethings and 50-somethings and so on? Why limit the ability to be vivacious to ages 20-29? I understand everyone has responsibilities and I would be pretty confused if my 50-something parents decided to uproot and go live in Indonesia to learn about a new culture. But it doesn't always have to be something so major. Everyone, all ages, can live the way a 20-something does (or should). Everyone can live with curiosity, heart, and passion.
Numero tres. DO WHAT YOU WANT. Don't refer to a list made by someone else who's only similarity to you is your age. Do what makes you happy. If it's something fantastically selfless, like starting a charity to save the world, go for it. If it's something a little less dramatic, like painting your nails, sure. I literally do not care what you're doing as long as you feel fulfilled.
Numero quatro. I'm not entirely sure why these articles have labeled marriage as a time when living practically stops. The vibe I get from articles like these is that an individual who says the dreaded words, "I do" can never do anything fun or exciting ever ever ever again. It's as if they put a ring on it and immediately go hide under a rock. I'm not married, so I don't have full credibility to say this. But I think life goes on after marriage. Take my parents, for example. Literally one hour ago, we were talking about going to Costa Rica for vacation. If that's not living, I don't know what is. Yes, marriage requires a high level of commitment and more responsibilities and maybe even little creatures one day called children. But in my mind, that's living. I just don't understand the strange symbolism between marriage and jail.
I'm not sure if that sounded like a rant or if it was my attempt to make myself feel better from my frustration with these posts on Facebook. I also need to inform you that I did enjoy reading both these lists. I actually laughed out loud several times on the first one and found myself shaking my head in agreement with the second. Maybe this is my tiny attempt to stop the madness. Regardless, please, everyone, chill with the 20-something stuff. And all you 20-somethings (and 30-somethings and 40-somethings and 90-somethings and six year olds), GO DO WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY.
That's all. I'm done now.
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