I’m in my twenties, which quite frankly is ridiculous.
There’s been a lot (and I mean A LOT) of talk in the media recently about the so-called ‘best decade of our lives’, where we are supposed to achieve everything, develop meaningful relationships, be on our dream career path and live the sort of glossy life you only see in advertisements for things like Ray Ban and Barcardi.
We spent our teenage years dreaming of this life. We shaped it, perfected it, chose the details right down to the wall colour in our hip urban share house. And then one day we woke up a twenty-something, and got quite a rude shock. Our lives could not be more different to the ones we had planned. Blame the GFC, the dwindling job market, or the fact that most people still have a room at Mum and Dad’s house, but this doesn’t look like it’s going to be changing any time soon.
Our twenties were once lauded by all the things we’re going to do, achieve and become. Now, it’s characterised by all the things we can’t do, haven’t done. The good news is, it’s not just me. Scientific research (i.e. chatting to my other twenty-something friends) and the TV show Girls (if you haven’t seen it yet, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?) has lead me to realise that many people are feeling, well, a bit underwhelmed by their twenties. Not to mention confused, frustrated and just a little bit jaded.
So like I said, my twenties is ridiculous. It’s so ridiculous, in fact, that I’ve made up a phrase to describe this peculiar stage of life.
Let me demonstrate.
On My Living Arrangements
Teenager Me: When I’m older, I’m going to live in a fabulous apartment with my three best mates. We’ll have odd coloured walls and thoughtfully scattered pot plants and possibly a cat. The four of us will go off to our collective jobs during normal work hours, and in the evenings will take turns cooking with many laughs along the way. On weekends we’ll have endless barbecues in the sunshine, with all our quirky friends (at least one of whom is a DJ). My life will look like a cross between an ad for Ray Bans and the early years of Sex and the City.
Twenties Me: I just moved back in with my parents.
Twenties Gap: 8/10
On My Wardrobe
Teenager Me: I’m going to have the most amazing wardrobe ever. With all the money I’ll be earning in my full time job, I’ll have an awesome mix of desisgner, vintage, and half of Topshop’s collection.
Twenties Me: My wardrobe mostly consists of the too-small, too-large, too-scruffy, and too-what-was-I-thinking? Blame a fluctuating weight and a tendency to buy cheap clothes.
Twenties Gap: 6/10*
* I do have some gems in there; I just tend to wear them over and over again.
On My Preferred Mode Of Transport
Teenager Me: I’ll have my own car. Or perhaps a motorbike. If I have a car then DEFINTIELY a red one, with awesome speakers. I can pick up all my friends and go on road trips! But a motorbike would be SO badass…
Twenties Me: I fight with my siblings over who gets to borrow Mum’s car.
Twenties Gap: 9.5/10
On My Love Life
Teenager Men: I’m going to have so much sex when I’m older. Like, so much sex. Maybe I’ll have a threesome. Maybe I’ll be bisexual. Who knows? I’ll be getting laid.
Twenties Me: Navigating the tricky waters of parents and relationships under one roof is way too hard. Boyfriend = yes. People you are sort of sleeping with but not too sure where it’s going but kinda like = no. Moving from one stage to the other is tricky when parents need to know where you are 95% of the time. Basically, it’s like being a teenager again but with less curfews and homework.
Twenties Gap: 4/10
On My Job
Teenager Me: I’m going to work in the COOLEST office. Me and my twenty-something colleagues will laugh in meetings, relax in bean bags and make smart sounding noises when we walk in heels. I don’t’ know what work I’ll be doing, but I’ll most certainly be doing it on a Mac.
Twenties Me: Please, anyone, give me a paying job. But, you know, one that doesn’t interfere with uni, internships, or government assistance.
Twenties Gap: 9/10*
* This score is not a 10/10 simply because my internship does have a pretty cool office!
On My Boobs
Teenager Me: I’ll finally have boobs.
Twenties Me: At least I have boobs!
Twenties Gap: 0/10
Once I started, I just couldn’t stop! Check out The Twenties Gap Part II.
How big is your Twenties Gap? Is life everything you thought it would be, or (like me), could it not be further from the dream?