I will be turning 28 in about 6 months and I took a little time to reflect on my journey this far. My life hasn’t been easy. It is still a struggle to an extent but I guess a part of growing up is learning to live with the struggle and not letting it suffocate you. Despite the struggle, I would like to believe I did some things right.
Your twenties are supposed to be the years you discover yourself. The time to let loose without any fear because you can always blame it on being young. The years where recklessness is the norm. Or so I’ve heard. My twenties have not been typical, that is if anything like that actually exists. So here are some things I am glad I did in my early twenties.
SPENDING TIME WITH MY FRIENDS (THE BOYS)
When I was in high school, I kept to myself. Didn’t have that many friends after form 3 because betrayal can be a mother! After high school I joined a different church where I made some pretty cool friends. We used to hang out every Saturday and Sunday afternoon to talk about life, love and one day making it out.
It’s funny when I think about it now, but one of them used to remind us to cherish the time we spent together for a day would come when we’d be too busy to see each other. That day arrived sooner than expected. Despite keeping in touch once in a while, we are out of touch.
But I am happy I spent that time with them. It was a great learning experience and they became my second family. They felt like home. I think I will plan a hang out soon, it would be nice to catch up.
My moving out of my parents wasn’t exactly planned. It just happened. I was 22 at the time and my dad and I weren’t getting along that well. A couple of things had happened to get us to that point. It became uncomfortable and for the first couple of months, I just bounced around without a plan or anything. Make a point of having a plan when you decide to move out, trust me. Thanks to family members that become friends, I had a stepping stone. My cousin helped me out a great deal until I found my footing.
This made for a great learning experience. It is not as easy as you might think. I had been thinking of this transition for a long time but my reality when it happened could not have been farther from what I had imagined. A couple of friends came through as well.
I am glad my dad and I are at a better place now. If I could change anything about the time it happened, I would only make sure my dad and I are good but leave everything as was. The experiences played a huge role in the person I have become.
You might be wondering why I felt the need to add this. Here is the thing, I don’t drink, anymore, and unlike most people I didn’t start drinking when I was in my teenage years. Actually the first time I took a sip of alcohol was out of depression back when I was 22 and I lost my virginity the same night. I was at a really bad place emotionally. Alcohol offered me temporary happiness and to me that was better than nothing. That was also the first time I had set foot into a club. Dancing is something I love a lot. My dream was, and might still be becoming a choreographer. Despite what this might allude to I have been out clubbing a handful of times. It was good for me because I discovered that it was not my thing. Made my peace with it and now I don’t have to justify my non-clubbing ways to anyone.
Dirty spaces are not my thing. When completely stressed out and my depression kicks in, that might change. But when I am ‘myself’ I just can’t stand it. Living in the same house with someone who was my opposite was one hell of lesson. My mum brought me up in a way that left me vulnerable to being used by others. At one point in my life I had a housemate who turned me into their husband, wife and housemaid all in one. My nature wouldn’t allow me to only clean my clothes, or my dishes if anything was dirty, I would clean everything.
This was a tough one for me. You live and you learn. I learnt alright. The hard way too. I learnt say no and stand up for myself a lot more especially to my friends.
Yeah, yeah I know what you are thinking. Get your head out the gutter. For most of my life I had to reduce myself for the sake of others. Was treated a certain because of where I came from and hardly made any genuine connections. Hardly trusted ‘friends’ and my focus was on getting out. I exposed myself to the things I wanted to be involved in. Learnt, challenged and pushed myself to be what ‘I was supposed to be’.
During this period, I became me. Finding my place in the world and discovering the things that brought me peace. I am still in this stage and loving the journey. Peeling off the layers as I go and it will only get better.
There’s probably more I could add to this list but this is enough for now. I will probably do another list of something cool and if you have any questions feel free to drop me a comment. What are some of the things you are glad you did in your early twenties?