This is probably not the twenties that you anticipated when you were a teen. It must be a shocking experience for you when life has officially introduced the concept of adulting. You didn’t expect that the world could be both harsh and kind. Growing up, it didn’t occur to you that throughout your lifetime, there will always be something that will make you feel unsatisfied.
I can tell this isn’t how you pictured your circumstances to be like. You thought you would be all over the world, collecting stamps on your passport by now, didn’t you? You imagined yourself to be in a stable relationship, prepared to settle down in few years time. You assumed you would have enough money to buy things that you want. But so far, none of those expectations about your twenties have come true.
For most of us who are building ourselves from the ground up, I’m sure we share the same frustration and weird feeling of not being enough. We didn’t have a trust fund waiting for us when we were born. Our parents don’t have connections with big people from different industries. And we haven’t won the lottery yet. The life that is handed down to us isn’t easy breezy.
But we’re trying to flip the table. And I guess that’s something. I guess even if we’re not as privileged as other people in our age, we’re still working hard for the world to love us. We’re aiming to be better. We’re doing extraordinary things to change the story of our lives. And we never give up. Not once do we consider raising our white flags to request for a timeout.
Adulting is hard, especially for people like us. We’re not lucky enough to have billions of options. We can’t afford to be changing our decisions literally every time we feel like it. Because nobody has given us huge safety nets to fall back on when we fail. We make our safety nets. We make our decisions. And if we mess up, there’s no one we can blame but us.
Having a complete independence is liberating, but can be exhausting too sometimes. We take pride in paying our own bills, in affording our own apartment, in being self-sufficient. We’re proud of the fact that we barely ask our parents for support — be it financial or emotional. We’re strong and capable and resilient. But despite our bravery, some days we get confused.
Like all human beings, we also have moments of doubt. We question the way we work hard. We envy all these 20-something people traveling outside of their countries. We check our bank accounts and ask ourselves if we should start using our savings for leisure too. If now is the time to pamper ourselves with our hard-earned money.
The pressure of trying to become someone great is taking a toll on us that we don’t realize we’re comparing ourselves to others. And deep down, we know this is wrong. This act of looking at someone’s plate needs to stop. Because we’ve hustled to be the best version of us — not an A- version of somebody else.
I get it that we deserve to give ourselves something nice once in a while. But we shouldn’t be spending our money out of jealousy. We have to remember why we’re saving our earnings in the first place. We need to remind ourselves where our money can bring us. And how it can allow us to start a new life, be in a better place, pursue what our souls want.
There’s no guarantee that it will be less challenging down the road. But we have made it this far to only turn around. We have fought for our journey just to be here. We are where we are for the right reasons. This is what we’ve been waiting for since the day we turned twenty. This is the freedom that we want. And despite the hardships, this is our chance to turn our stories into beautiful ones.
So let’s keep going.