20, in 10.
You know how the answer you are looking for is sometimes projected right out infront of you? Well, (and quite literally speaking) as the light shines from the lamp on my bedside table onto a CD, the word ‘Nevermind’ is reflected onto the ceiling above my bed. This notorious album produced by one of the worlds biggest bands, Nirvana, has just spelt out my answer… Nevermind.
I turned 20 yesterday, and despite what people say about 20 being such a young age, it hit me like a ton of bricks. I’m over and out of my teens – the worst and best years of my life so far; and I have no idea where I am headed. My clearest memories are from my teen years! They are the years and moments i dwell upon the most. My period of transition and mistakes.
Now that I’m 20, is this when i’m supposed to grow up and become an adult? Am i supposed to know what i want in life now? Do I get to choose a career out of a hat? Am i supposed to want a relationship now? How about money? I mean, I don’t have any; is that wrong?
To tell you the truth, i feel a little bit alone; sort of left by the way-side. I’ve been travelling down a path leading up hills and through rivers, and I’ve learnt a lot so far; but now i feel like i’ve come to the end of that road and all that i can see from here is a big open field – with no path.
Its daunting. It is a little bit exciting i guess, i mean i can choose what i want to do with my life and make my own path instead of following one that many have travelled before me.
We all have to go through the confusing journey of being a teen; we all have to start somewhere right? For me though, turning 2o is symbolic of the fact that i have already started to find out who i am, and from here on in it’s not so much a step-by-step process to get the ball rolling, but it is now an adventure – and unfortunately i don’t have a map. There is no manual in the back seat, and no instructions at the bottom of the box. It’s free for all.
I’m not good at this game, i never have been. I’m looking back at all the mistakes i’ve made in the past 5 to 6 years (especially the last year) and i’m cringing. There’s not as much room to make mistakes anymore; i’m playing major league now and one wrong side-step could mean the difference between some huge fat guy flying out of left field to rub my face in the dirt, and a good job…
I only just got good at surviving, and now i’m being chucked headlong into a new ocean with bigger sharks.
I remember when i was in year 2 at school, i would look up at the year 6’s and gawk. They were so tall and mature, and they had all these privleges that i didn’t. I totally wanted to be like them. When i got there though, i wasn’t tall, and i definately wasn’t mature; and those special privleges turned out to just be more mundane responsibilites. When i was in year 6, i just wanted to be in high school because i thought that once you get there, that is the highest level of ‘cool’ that you can achieve.
But i got to high school, and it was crap. There were all these older girls in the years above me that would knock me down in the hallways as they ran to their important elective classes, and who on muck-up days would wrap you in cling wrap and attach you to poles on the other side of the oval where no one could hear you cry… I wanted so badly to be in year 12.
When i got to year 12, i thought i was awesome. I felt like i had finally reached the top of the food chain; this was of course until i left high school and began fulltime work where i soon discovered that i had only been at the top of the weakest food chain in the world. My ambition disappeared. The best i could be looked too far away for me to achieve, so i gave up.
Two years later, i got over my pride and decided to start taking the little steps towards becoming an adult. I had been living in denial up until this point, and its only now that i realise how long the journey is. Will i ever get there? I look at my Dad, and even though he’s 48 physically, he’s still really only 14 on the inside; which is one of the things i love about him.
So now i’m cutting my own path. I’ve probably been doing it for longer than i realise, but the reality of turning 20 has shocked me somewhat; and now all i can think about is ‘growing up’. I look at some of my older friends and i wonder if they have felt the same way about becoming ‘old’; or do they just get on with it?
I guess that the answer to all my worries is simply; ‘Nevermind’. Is there anything that i can do about getting older? Nope. Even though such a simple answer is plastered onto my bedroom ceiling, it doesn’t ease the confusion and minor panic i feel on the inside.
I guess that as i grow up, the answer ‘Nevermind’ will just become easier to deal with.