Thursday, 26 January 2012

Twenty four.

We were riding the escalator up in silence on Friday when Carmen suddenly turned to me, as though the thought just occurred to her. And she said, "Wow. We're turning 24 this year. Can you believe it?"
At 18, I felt like I finally reached the age where my life was truly about to begin. At 21, I felt like I was finally legal, more of a grown-up than I had ever been. At almost 24, I feel old! I'm not where I always thought I would be by this age, but I guess that's life - unexpected, full of surprises.

When I was younger, I always thought that by the time I was 24, I'd have a career and climbing the corporate ladder. I thought I'd be living on my own in a quaint little apartment with a carb-packed fridge and a kitchen I never use, no longer the proverbial nerd still living with parents. I thought that by this age, I might be closer to my get-married-by-25, rather polyannish, goal. I never thought that I would still be a university student, still in that "studying" phase in life. Yeah, I suppose like most impractical dreamers, I thought I'd "have it all".

Instead, here I am, feeling rather barefoot while I wade my way tentatively through the murky river. Looking for graduate schools, looking for a research topic, trying not to let my shaky knees give way and get overwhelmed gulping unfiltered water into my mouth and nostrils. Knowing - or maybe, hoping more than knowing - that in less than two years, I will be somewhere in the United States of America and starting a new chapter in this wonderfully weird story called life.

I have friends from high school who are working/married/pregnant/mothers. And then there are those of us who are still in school, some finishing up their degrees, some doing their Masters or PhDs. If all goes well, I'm going to be 27 or 28 by the time I finish my Masters degree. And I'm hoping, praying, that after I get that Masters degree, I'll finally get to start on my career and family goals. I really want to have my own family, especially my own children who will smile big goofy smiles and love Harry Potter books as much as I do. And I really want to do that before I'm 30!