I have come to the maybe-not-so-shocking realization that I do not want to grow up. It sounds childish and even I hate saying it out loud, but there is no other way to describe how I feel at this moment in my life.
For those of you that don’t know, I am Kate, and I’m 20 years old. That, if you aren’t aware, is very young. Only a whole two decades have I been on this planet, 3 of which I spent pissing and shitting myself, and I still understand none of it. Everyone I’ve talked to tells me that no one really knows what they’re doing but I think I’ve taken it too far, because I don’t know what any of us are really doing.
This Is All Entirely Random
I came to this conclusion while spending a tremendous amount of time alone, which is not safe because that is when I do my most intense thinking. It is my understanding that there is no specific reason that any of us are here on this earth, it is all entirely random and we find ourselves making the assumption that it is fate because there is no logical explanation for our existence.
It came to me a few weeks ago when I was under so much stress because I remembered that I will be graduating at the end of April. Our ‘purpose’ on this planet is to work and make babies. That is the conventional and perpetual cycle that we follow. I don’t know how many people agree with me on this or if you think that my thought process is negative but that is what I have come to realize.
Yes, it is wonderful that most of us are born out of the love of two individuals that decided it might not be so bad to spend the rest of their lives together. However, we all live the same cookie cutter lives. As children, we play and eat and sleep and cry and learn. Those are our only responsibilities as kids, and the eating portion is actually up to our parents for the first 12 years of our lives (give or take a few years).
The Teen Years
Then, we enter into the teen years – this is the time in our lives when we decide that the world is out to get us. And yes, some days it really does feel that way. At this point in our lives we start to get our first jobs, and something feels kind of cool about having a job. We make money that we only have to spend on ourselves. But man, towards the end of high school the world starts to seem scary, we’re forced to make these decisions right now at the ages of 16, 17, and 18, that will affect the rest of our lives.
It is expected of us to make these choices, to go to post secondary, and then to get a job. The world starts to become less exciting and more of a chore. We are told that we have to do this if we want to have a job. We’re told that having a job will make us money and then we’ll be happy. And money is what it all comes down to. It’s less about what you WANT to do and more about what CAN you do to make money. They tell you to choose something you love, because then you’ll never work a day in your life, but what they really mean is pick something tolerable so you won’t feel the burden of adulthood.
So, you go to school because that’s what everyone else does. You do it because even if your parents don’t pressure you, (and mine didn’t) then the rest of the world does. Someone will be breathing down your neck, asking what you take at school. I learned the hard way when I was on my gap year that “I’m just working for now” was not an acceptable answer for most people.
I Want To Be Young, So Let Me Be
I can’t comment on life past 20 because I’m not there yet but from my understanding it doesn’t get better, it just gets easier to live with. And being in your twenties is a weird time because people treat you like a kid but expect you to be an adult. I am constantly being told how young I am, and then asked what I’m going to do for the rest of my life.
Please forgive me for this next part as it is quite aggressive but FUCK OFF. I have as much of an idea of what I’m going to do with the rest of my life as I do about what happens in a blackhole.
I don’t understand the desire to be an adult, to grow up and to work until you die. I know too many people who have rushed into adulthood and then realized that they have zero freedom, and bills, and responsibilities. Now, I’m not against anyone wanting to be a grown up at the age of 20, hell if you want to get married and start making babies, all the power to you. But don’t tell me how young I am and be shocked when I act ‘immature’ and for the love of all things that are good, please do not tell me to grow up. I’m learning.
I want to be free even just for a couple more years, I want to drink my face off and kiss strangers, and I want to be young. Goddamn it, I want to be young and feel young.