Last week I turned TWENTY FIVE. Ten years ago I thought that was old. I still kind of do. My 15 year old self believed I would be married, own a house and at the very least have a career. Instead, I find myself back at uni, checking my account balance before buying a coffee and still living at home. I do have a partner of almost 9 years, so I'm at least pretty much married haha. Despite all these things that make me a bit of a failure in our neo-liberal capitalist society, I'm feeling pretty good about how things are panning out.
Turning 25 has allowed me to reflect on the things I AM proud to have achieved. Firstly, I survived all of my compulsory schooling and went on to do another four years of tertiary education and have two goatskins to prove it (even though one has fallen behind the crystalware cabinet and I'm too lazy to retrieve it). As I am flailing through my first semester of my fifth year, I've had to remind myself I'm capable of doing this and I've made the right decision. Secondly, I haven't given up on running. This is a big thing for me. My whole life, I've tended to give up on things as soon as they get too hard or I embarrass myself with my incompetence, but not with this one. I have stuck through peeing myself, pooping in the forest, injuries and failed attempts at cracking two hours for the half marathon. It's not getting much easier, but I'm learning so much about myself, that it doesn't even feel like failing any more.
Finally, the most important one, is that I've opened myself up to friendship. I've always been a bit of a loner, with only a couple of good friends. I've been bullied and I've been a bully. I've spent the last decade claiming I was too busy to foster new friendships. In the past year, I let go of my insecurities about being cool or being liked and its made the world of difference. I've surrounded myself with people who are authentically themselves. When you aren't afraid to shine, you give others the permission to do so as well. So go ahead and be yourself. Of course I still have insecurities, I wonder if I did something wrong when someone doesn't text me back, or if I'll be rejected because I only know one Flume song (is Flume even cool anymore?). But seriously, fuck the haters.
Lets celebrate the wins, instead of focusing on the losses, people! Give yourself a break. It's something I'm definitely working on for my 25th year on planet earth.