There seems to be a popular trend of writing about “Generation Y”, and “15 things only 20-something will understand” and what not. People just can’t stop talking about how awesome being in their 20s is, telling the whole world that they are the most important, special and freest ones, but let me tell you what, YOU ARE NOT.

I’m 21 years old, and I f***ing love my life because it’s full of opportunities and challenges not because I have less obligations or I’m living in a smart age with information and technology making almost everything possible. Here are my reasons why I love and hate being 20-something.

something 1

Some people will never take you seriously. I had a friend I met through work and we’ve been really good friends for about half a year; we used to talk a lot about life, career, culture, and relationships and there were just so much in common that sometimes my boss had to tell me to stop talking and take care of other customers. But our friendship only lasted till he found out how old I was.

“What, you are 21?! Okay, forget about what I said,” he said, “you are a baby!” and he started telling everybody there, “Did you know that Stella is 21?” First, one’s age is a very personal thing to share especially to strangers, and every time we met since then, he started making fun of my ethics and choices simply because I was too young. I am young, but that doesn’t mean that I’m a toddler who doesn’t know how to live life. I’m still learning, yes, but I’ve seen and been through a lot.

I will make mistakes, a lot of them to be honest, and it’s okay.

Even though I try really hard to make mature choices and double check them, sometimes I lose control of myself and things to crazy beyond that point. I don’t go home more often to be part of the family, I waste money on things I will regret, I get lazy to put my work first before anything else, and I choose to travel first before saving up enough money for something more permanent. It’s okay, I’m still young. I will make mistakes but I will learn from them and be a better person when I’m in my 30s.

Partying and getting high every night till you reach a moment where you don’t realise how you got yourself don’t make you a cool person. I still go out a lot, but I can also spend three intriguing hours with my friends while just drinking lime soda. Things do get old, while you might or might not have realised it, and please do tell that to your liver. When you think you are missing out, you are really not.

The way you see yourself is just as important as the way people see you. A while ago when I was going through a phase, I used to get depressed over how I was not ’the one’, and how I felt as if I had nothing left when I was on my own. I read, write, run, drink, and work to keep myself busy all the time and to develop myself. At the end of the day, all you have is yourself, but do not take this the wrong way; you have the right and responsibility to love and respect yourself, not trying to become a person that people love but you are unfamiliar with.

something 2

Waiting till you figure out what you want, and where your life is going is not okay, especially because you are in your 20s. Ask people in 40s, 50s, and 60s, if they know what they are doing with their lives. Let’s see how many of them come up with positive answers. Human beings are wonderers; we keep searching and striving for things we think we need, but opportunities only and always come to those who deserve and are prepared for them. Stop thinking, start acting. Look for an internship, try building houses for tsunami victims in Philippine. Don’t waste your time because youth is not a good enough reason.

something 3

You can’t buy time. We are young, but time is fleeting and make the most efficient use of it before you regret and think, “dang, I should’ve, or shouldn’t have.” All I’m saying is that age really doesn’t matter. If you are not doing something because you are old, or if you are only doing something because you are young and you think you are allowed to, you are living your life in the wrong way.

Stella Ko

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