Age: Is It Just A Number?

I was thinking today, as I subbed and was watching 7th grader’s take a state test about age.  About my age and where I am in my life.  About how long ago (or so it seems) that I was in the shoes of these 7th graders.  About where I want to be.  About how much more I have left to do and discover.  And, inevitably (even if not very consciously) about whether I will get it all done – both in the amount of time I set on myself and the amount of time I end up having left (which of course, I don’t know).

Then, I read a wonderful entry over at Ivy League insecurities about age.  Please go and check it out.  Aidan has a wonderful way with words and I’m sure my musings won’t sound nearly as eloquent.

Anyways, my musings were mainly about myself – go figure, I’m a little self-centered (but aren’t we all?).  They were about where I am in relation to others I know personally.  About where I am in relation to others that I don’t know personally.  About where I am in the grand scheme of things and how I rank compared to others of my age.

And I can’t help but feel as if I have fallen short.  At my age, a humbling and young 25, I know I shouldn’t necessarily feel these things.  But I can’t help looking at people that have accomplished so much more than me and feel as if I am floundering. 

I think that part of it is that I am not where I thought I would be.  I am not living on my own in a classroom of my own teaching children that I would call mine for a certain amount of time (or maybe forever after they have been mine).  And that’s where I thought I would be.

I did not think that I would still be living at home with my mother and struggling to pay back my student loans.  I did not think that I would feel like I was lost and that things might never get better.  I did not think I would feel so inadequate.

I don’t want or need to be a famous athlete who at the age of 20 has broken records and seen more than I will probably ever see.  I don’t need to be a famous actress who has had a number of hit movies and will never have to worry about money ever. 

I just want to feel successful and happy.  I know that (hopefully) I still have many years to live out my dreams – to become a wonderful teacher, to meet a great guy and get married and have a family, to write (and maybe even publish) a loved book. 

Maybe it’s a generational, economical thing.  Maybe everyone feels this way in their mid-20s and things really do get better.  Maybe I’m over reacting and I have been successful thus far.  It’s hard to tell when you’re right in the middle of it all.  It’s so hard to tell.

How do you feel about your age?  Did you head over and check out Aidan’s entry?  What are your thoughts about age and feeling inadequate and comparing yourself to others?


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