I Can’t Believe I’m 22

Is it too early to say I’m having a quarter-life crisis? Or is it just my anxiety getting the best of me? Whatever. It’s depressing.

Last year, when I celebrated my 21st birthday, the thing that bugged me most was the fact that I was going to be 22 next.

And what. The. Actual. Fuck.

I spent the entire year dreading the days leading to my 22nd birthday.

I mean, 21 was OK. Still young, only a bit older than an actual teenager.

I was fresh as a fresh grad, with the exception of a few wrinkles and pimples here and there, all thanks to the sleepless nights of fighting depression.

Now, I’m 22.

I’m still young, I know, if we’re talking about experience in the corporate jungle or life in general.

Yet I feel old, so old.

I feel like I’m a 54-year-old spinster trapped in the body of a 22-year-old dreamer.

Perhaps it’s the depression that’s talking.

“What, you’re 22? You’re getting old, and you’re dying soon.”

Or maybe it’s the responsibilities I carry on my shoulders.

I mean, I’ve always felt old—I’m the eldest. I’ve always been the enabler, the leader. I’ve always guided my siblings, my peers, my partner, my colleagues. Heck, I even parented my parents.

I’ve always led the pack, even though I’m usually the youngest wolf.

And yet I’ve always felt old.

I can’t believe I’m 22.

I can’t believe I’m getting older and older each day. It bugs me every night. I can’t believe it’s been 22 years.

I spent two decades acting as an adult, as THE adult, because I always felt the need to act like one.

Now, all I want to do is raise my middle finger to Adulting.

My youth is slipping through my fingers no matter how hard I try to save it. I can’t save it. I want to save it.

I don’t want to get old.

I remember Jeremiah de Saint-Amour from Love in the Time of Cholera, who took his own life before death took its toll. All because he didn’t want to grow old.

And like him, I don’t want to grow old. Just like him…

 

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