You spend your entire life waiting to be older.
I remember when I was 8, I couldn’t wait to be 10. Double digits! It sounded so amazing. I’d always be littler than my big brother and sister, but at least I’d have two numbers to my name. Two numbers!
At 12, I remember working out what year I’d be 16. The magical year “2000” seemed like a lifetime away. I thought I’d be so cool by then.
At 15, I couldn’t wait to be 17. In all the movies, books and musicals, the beautiful girl was always seventeen. Waiting for her guy to come along. I hoped and hoped and hoped I’d be pretty like my big sister.
At 17, I was doing pretty well. I had a good boyfriend, long hair, nice clothes, decent grades. I felt 17, but not quite a princess. I was too young to drink, but too old to slack off. I got sick, and a lot changed. I started to re-prioritise.
At 18 I wanted to be 20.
At 20 I couldn’t wait to be 21.
And then, all of a sudden, I reached 22.
It’s not old. Hardly. It’s still a baby to anyone over 25.
They like to grin and nod at you, or just roll their eyes. “Oh you’re still so young.”
It’s a hilarious mix of condescending and superiority that amuses me greatly. Cause you’re so old? Because you remember being so confused and ‘finding yourself’ at 22? I hardly think I’ve ever been the average person for their age. I’ve been performing professionally since I was 10 years old. Most of my friends range from 3-12 years older, and live all over the world. I’ve spent large chunks of the last 4 years alone, or living overseas.
It makes you a little different from your peers. You grow up a great deal when you’re forced to live mainly in your own head. You start to actually feel like you know what you’re doing in life.
And 22 is a good place to be: you’re not a baby anymore. You can’t be called a teenager or youth. You’re old enough to make your own big decisions. To make those big purchases. To live alone. To be married. To think about a family.
I’m not quite sure how I feel about it. But I’ll make it good.