25 Used To Be The Age I Thought I’d Have My Shit Together

Eric Nopanen

Twenty five used to seem like the “shit together” age. I’m not complaining, I just didn’t have a realistic projection of myself when I was younger.

I thought that I would have surpassed the masses and carved out an exciting, edgy, unique career for myself that was full of self-gratification and jealously from my peers.

I wanted, (and have to admit I still find the idea appealing) to have others know my name and to use it in a “did you hear she accomplished this?” type of way. It has been seven years since I left high school… in that time I have propelled myself into an exhausting state of wanderlust. I have lived in London, lost and gained thirty pounds, have been the awkward weird artist, and the hot cool girl.

I have used my body like I checked it out from the library and can return it for a new edition. I have been an event coordinator, an administrative assistant, a free-lance graphic designer… all were roles that I felt I needed to act the part to fit in. Fake it till you make it.

Maybe I am an actress? I would love to be but I am so out of tune with my emotions half the time that I couldn’t possibly hone into them when the time calls to be a star. Or could I? I have lived in Thailand, and have been a teacher…although I wasn’t very dedicated to the children. I have lived abroad with my boyfriend, a dream that I made come true.

I feel the reality of being just another number, another car on the road, another amazon prime member sinking in.

I want so badly to break the mold, yet feel myself working hard to fit within it.

I feel like my brain is so addicted to screens that I can’t enjoy the silence.

I can’t fall asleep at night without my Netflix account because I need it to queue endless unwatched, but heard episodes. I stuff down bad memories, boredom and the quiet with food groups that I know will be easy to choke back up again. My head feels like it has lost all interest in the things that I used to enjoy.

I could paint, but the mess isn’t worth the anxiety induced expectation that all of my art needs to be perfect, or else I’m not a good artist. I crave sex and attention when I’m sad, but my boyfriend is turned off when I’m unhappy. I listen to self-help books because I don’t have enough focus to read, I and I think to myself that the ideas are so easy and common sense that I could write them myself, and then realize that THAT is exactly what the authors thought before they became authors.

I have supportive friends and family members and when I play my part they find my outlook and enthusiasm infectious. I am generally happy…even when I feel isolated because some days it’s hard to give enough of a shit to have your shit together. TC mark

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