Life led us on. We were supposed to have fairy tale trimmings with a side order of happily ever after delivered to us before the age of 30. With growth meant true freedom, unbound intelligence, stunning features that mature with age. We were supposed to be suave, sophisticated, and cool. No acne, no worries, right? We imagined our life to be filled with excitement.
The rest of our lives was stuffed in lined diaries, scribbled in illegible handwriting that we swore would get better, stuck on random post it notes, crammed into old boxes and dripped in gold. We fashioned a beautiful life, one where we were happy, free, rich, and in love.
Fast forward, and how many of us have our dream career, our dream cars, our dream family? How many of us are chasing the next high, telling ourselves this will be our big break and we WILL make it? Over the years, our ideas for the future have transformed, our hopes have become malleable and limp, flopping down, forcing us to cancel or change our life plans. So we do. Sometimes children appear earlier than we thought or are pushed back to our 30s. Our goals are always one step away. Life is a little different than the one dripped in gold.
So maybe we’ll have flickers of a life we dreamt. By the age of 25, the loves of our lives are no longer in our lives. Children have been swapped for chubby and well-loved pets and the ultimate dream house transforms into a rented place in a dodgy neighbourhood—or even more likely, we sleep in our childhood bedroom. One thought always bounces around our head: Life’s a mess.
Feeling this way is normal. It’s okay. Everyone feels lost at times. Yet, there is a little voice telling us to get it together, saying we need to put ourselves out there. We need to have our hearts broken, to constantly try and have a personal breakthrough at our expense. It almost feels like life is a glow stick—snapping it will make it work. By enduring these life miseries, we’ll feel like we have earned our dream life; we’ve had our ‘left in the rain’ montage and now sitting at the top is where we’re destined to be.
It’s vital to realize we don’t have to break down to achieve our ‘dripped in gold’ life. We can take it easy, one step at a time. Working on who we are, who we want to be, has no age limit. There is no age limit on finding a career, finding love, or buying a house. So that constant pressure? It will pass. With each and every day, more barriers are being silently broken.
Whether we are aware of it or not, we are slowly blossoming into the person we imagined so long ago, the person who’s grown into their features. For most people, it will be slow, collective, compiled of miseries and flashes of pure bliss, glued together with a tinge of melancholy, because these moments are fleeting but outlined with happiness. Letting go of that is too hard.
But one morning, we’ll wake up realizing we’ve achieved it. Our perfect life. We will be happy. It will be significantly different to how we thought it would be, but it will be there and ours for the taking.