As I write this, I am but a few days away from my 21st birthday. I’m excited for obvious reasons, but I find myself feeling more reflective than previous birthdays. At one point, it hit me: this will be my last milestone birthday in years. When you think about it, the younger you are the more quickly you hit exciting periods in your life. When you turn 13 you’re finally a teenager, 16 you can drive, 18 and you’re an adult, and finally 21 you can legally drink.
Besides being able to rent a car at 25, there aren’t as many “Hallmark” birthdays ahead. At first this thought bummed me out, but the more I reflected on it the more I realized that maybe that isn’t such a bad thing. There are so many expectations that come with birthdays, especially when you’re young. After this Sunday I’ll be freed from some of those expectations in a way. There’s this overhanging pressure for twenty-somethings to have unlimited amounts of fun on their b-days going out, getting drinks, laughing with friends until the wee hours of the morning.
Don’t get me wrong, I want to do all of those things! But the older I get, the more clear my perception of a year becomes, and the more I like to use the time around my birthday to think about how I’ve grown since my last and where I want to be by the next. As I’m approaching one of the last milestone birthdays in my life, while I plan on celebrating to the fullest, I’m also looking towards the future.
So, cheers to all the people celebrating milestone b-days, and here’s to many more!