There’s this weird thing that happens to people in their 20s. And as a person in my 20s I feel it is my duty to educate the masses on this weirdness.
When you are in your 20s, it’s hard to know the difference between early, mid and late 20s. Sometimes you have flashes of for-real adulthood in your early 20s (such as I did when I bought my first house and had a mortgage at 21).
And sometimes in your late 20s, you’re in the middle of doing nothing important and you go “Holy crap. Am I really 29?? How is that possible? I cannot be older than 24. 29 feels so…wrong!”
Have you ever felt that? Because I feel that all the time. I feel like I don’t know what 29 is supposed to feel like.
I got out for a little toddler-free time to celebrate the 21st birthday of My Starfish last night.
Happy birthday, Erin! Love your face!
The whole time I was there I was feeling my age. This morning? I’m feeling it even more.
I don’t mean I’m feeling my age in that “OMG-I’m-so-hungover-I’m-never-drinking-again-because-the-recipe-for-vodka-has-changed-and-it-is-suddenly-much-stronger-than-it-has-ever-been-in-the-history-of-ever-and-it-cannot-possibly-be-that-my-tolerance-has-gone-drastically-down-since-that-frat-party-at-the-TEP-house-with-the-hunch-punch-9-years-ago” kind of way.
Though the latter is most definitely true. And probably not the former, but I would have no way of knowing that.
—And for the record I had two beers. And a birthday shot for Erin. Because I am a responsible adult now. With a child. And that’s what this post is all about. So no worries to those of you who think I went out last night and got myself all crazy. Because I did not. Anyway—
Last night was kind of surreal. I’m in my LATE LATE 20s. Nearly 30. And while I love Erin and would do absolutely anything for her, I couldn’t help but feel really out of place as the night went on.
At first, it was great because it was just a small group of people I’ve known for a while and have been introduced to on more than one occasion. (LOL! Love you, Starfish!) So even though I was older than most of them, it felt normal. The age gap was minimized by the fact that I’ve met these people before. I don’t feel my age around people I know. Even when my age is higher than theirs and they are the same age as my youngest brother. Or younger.
There was chatter and laughter and it was comforting to tell stories about people we all knew and to catch up.
It was one of those moments where in my head I was 23 or 24. Just older enough to be the “wise” one at the table. But young enough to be part of the group.
And then people I didn’t know started coming in and I just started feeling awkward and unsure of myself.
These people were people Erin works with. Erin is a server at a restaurant. Sometimes people in the restaurant industry are kind of like carnies. Only less freakish and a smidgen more normal. And with regular-people-sized hands. I think. (But not Erin. I can assure you that she is normal and so are her hands.)
Last night, there were sideways glances in my direction like “Who is that old person and what is she doing here?”
The point is that they don’t cotton to outsiders. And I? Am an outsider. And I felt like it.
In my younger days (::ahem::) I would’ve mingled. I would’ve struck up a conversation and found common ground. I would’ve met new people and by the end of the night, I would’ve felt like part of the group.
Last night, when the new people started arriving, I knew it was time for me to go. I knew that they would be out and up until way, way later than I’ve been awake without an infant or toddler in a long time.
I won’t lie. Part of me was a little saddened by this realization.
But then I came home to this house where there are Hot Wheels and Little People and the signs of a toddler in every corner. And I climbed into bed with a husband who loves me. And this morning, I woke up to the happy jabber of that toddler over the monitor and the hug of my husband.
And suddenly, 29 doesn’t feel so bad.
Y’all, don’t forget that April is Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention month. I’m Blogging for Children and hope you’ll join me. Get your post up and then on Friday, there’ll be a link up and a new challenge!