Design of a decade
Part 2 of 2
I guess it's really just coming to terms with reality that made me accept that I was indeed turning 32. No big realization, no pivotal moment, no fuss. Well, there were changes that supported the theory that when one aspect of a person's life is not going well, another will thrive. Let's just say that work is fabulous – I've never been busier – but I'm back on the dating market after four years of absence.
Meeting and talking to a lot of new people was an eye opener for me. It made me see how different someone my age is to someone who's 22 or 42. And it's so weird that now, I can't wait to be in my forties. But I'm getting ahead of myself because I actually love being 32. I sincerely believe that being older millennials, people in their thirties are on the cusp of adulthood and that's very exciting.
It's great being in your thirties and having amassed a wide range of experiences and knowledge because twentysomethings look up to you and think of you as a credible source of life lessons. At the same time, you and your peers share mutual respect because you've matured enough that you've stopped competing with one another. Your only competition now is yourself. Due to the fact that you're considered an adult and no longer a child playing dress-up, your seniors, people in their forties, are FINALLY taking you seriously and valuing your contributions. You're legit and they know it.
All that greatly boosts one's confidence and self-esteem, which for me were massively lacking in the figuring-out-what-the-hell-I'm-doing-and-going-to-do-with-my-life era I fondly call my twenties.
As a generation of entitled spoiled brats, millennials are known to delay growing up. But growing up is inevitable and I think that we're growing up – and growing accustomed to the idea of growing up – together. Even writers who come up with faux-inspirational listicles are maturing. And because of that, I'm going to do a complete 180 on my opinion on such content.
Between submitting last Saturday's column (in which I expressed my disapproval of listicles) and writing this one, I came across a story on Elite Daily titled “61 Things You Have To Reconcile With By The Time You Turn 30.” Admittedly, I went into it with a lot of skepticism. But I came out really respecting the writer's point of view.
Consider these fine points she made – that you have to accept:
9. That you'll never look like Heidi Klum.
18. That life will never be easy.
36. That a 401k may actually be more important than stamps on a passport.
37. That you really aren't that special.
What I love about it is the deliberately anti-typical-millennial way of thinking. It supports my theory that members of this generation, particularly the older ones, have come a long way from being the whiny entitled me-me-me SOBs that we were a decade ago. Like, OMG, we finally get it. We're finally making sense. We're finally done hyper-romanticizing ourselves and hyper-inflating our egos. We're finally realizing that we can dream of outrageous things that we hope to achieve within our lifetimes, and that said dreams may or may not come true. And if they don't, we're okay with it. We're not going to bitch about it. And we'll have a Plan B, C, up to L.
When I was 22, I said I was going to go on a solo backpacking trip across Europe for a month before I turn 30. Never happened, of course. And I'm fine with that. Maybe I'll get to do it before 40. I think it'll be more fun because I'll be making better decisions and I won't be dirt poor after the trip, as I would've been if I did it in my twenties. But if it still doesn't happen by my 40th birthday, I think I'll still be okay. Because I can always put that in my “before 50” list. No pressure.
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