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Twenty-fiving and Maybe Thriving

Updated: Mar 30, 2021

So, I turned 25 last week. I expected this whole quarter-of-a-century thing would somehow feel different, but as with most birthdays, it feels un-monumental. Underwhelming. Of course it’s time to up my anti-aging skincare game now that I’m approaching my late twenties, but otherwise I feel quite the same. Shocking, isn't it?

I think I’m finally accepting that my age does not determine where I should be in life. You can be a married mother of two at 25 or you can be a student living at home with her parents (hi!) and that’s okay! I’m going to get where I’m going when the time is right for ME, and just because I’m not there right now doesn’t mean I’m doing something wrong. It just means I’m on my own path. And being an adult is overrated, anyway.

That said, I’m not really afraid of aging anymore. I actually welcome it with open arms. I’m excited about growing more and more into myself, becoming more comfortable in my own skin with each passing year, and watching as most of the things I worry about become so tiny and insignificant in retrospect. Getting older means taking less BS (omg y’all I can finally, ALMOST stand up for myself) and being more selfish with what deserves your time and energy. Getting older means more knowledge, more experiences, more growth, more confidence. It’s realizing that not everyone is going to like you and that’s okay. You’re not going to click with everyone you meet, even if they’re a totally wonderful human. You don’t have to be like anyone else and you don’t have to do what other people are doing. Also, no one really expects anything of you. All that pressure you feel, well, you probably put it on yourself. The people who love you just want you to be happy, and that’s really all you should want for yourself, too.

There’s a liberation in getting older. A freedom to be in charge of your own life and how you want it to be. How you want it to feel. I’m realizing that our lives are just a series of choices. We can make our choices from a place of fear and doubt and insecurity, or we can make them from a place of love and passion and courage. We can’t always choose what opportunities come our way or what curveballs are thrown at us, but we can choose how we move forward. I would never say we can simply choose to be happy, but we can choose to get help, to surround ourselves with the right people, and to work on healing with the resources available to us. I’ve learned that the bravest thing we can do is ask for help when we need it. It’s actually cowardly to think otherwise.

So, life is essentially a long-ass series of choices. But even the “bad” choices lead us to new opportunities for growth. I don’t believe “everything happens for a reason” in the sense that our lives are set on a predestined path at birth, but I do believe everything that happens to us offers an opportunity to evolve and improve in ways we never would have had our path not taken us there. And when we make our choices from a place of love, we continuously move towards becoming the best possible versions of ourselves. And isn’t that what we’re all striving for? Isn’t that kind of the whole point of life?

My 10-year-old self would have said I wanted to be a mother at 25. My 15-year-old self would have said I wanted to be married at 25. My 20-year-old self would have said I wanted to have a steady career at 25. And my 25-year-old self, well, she says I can be wherever the heck I want to be at 25. Still in school, living at home with my parents, driving a car that I pray every day doesn’t break down, going to therapy, crying a lot, laughing a lot, going through the ups & the downs, and writing all about it along the way. Would my 10-year-old self be thrilled that I am unwed, childless, still in school, and living with my parents? Mmm, maybe not. But she would be stoked that I’m fulfilling her dream of being a teacher (well, her backup goal behind being a superstar or actress). What matters is that I am happy and believe this is where I’m meant to be right now. This is where I’m meant to be at 25. This is MY 25, not anyone else’s, and it couldn’t be any other way. And it turns out I actually wouldn’t want it any other way... Ok, so I wouldn’t complain about having nicer car or my own place, but I’ll live. It will all come when it’s my time. And I’m no longer in a rush to get there. I’m here, and here is a wonderful place to be.


Twenty-fiving Tal (where does the time go?!?!)


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