27 Realisations at 27

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I contemplate some of the mysteries of the world that have begun to reveal its secrets to me

It’s not like I just turned 27 or anything. (Oh look, it’s November. Over six months since my birthday.) I just didn’t feel motivated to write as much because I’m still dealing with my new emerging inner sloth. Is this a sign of aging or just plain laziness? All I know is I’ve lost some of that youthful go-go-go Energiser fuelled enthusiasm I had for every of my passions. These days, I’m most passionate about being lazy. Anyway, I really wanted to write this one for the record. Took me awhile, but here it is.

1. I bruise bloat easily

The most irritating “ailment” of my late 20s is the ridiculous bloating I experience whenever I have bread, noodles, rice, milk, coffee or any of my favourite carbs. Some days its so unbearable I feel like my lower tummy is gonna blow! I have to eat “healthy” or deal with the consequences. I also spend lots of my time researching belly bloat and reading articles like this, this, this and this.

2. It’s harder to “get” new trends 

OMG. It took me forever to understand how something so simple like Snapchat works and when I did, I gave up on it, because none of my peers (a.k.a fellow old farts) figured out how to use it or sustained any interest in it before reverting to Facebook and Instagram like ‘old people’.

3. Friends, no matter how close, will move in and out of my life and it’s okay

Some friends get married and have kids and get busy. Other friends are juggling changes in career. I, myself, am busy with maintaining relationships with my close friends and building friendships with friends I’ve met later in life. It’s difficult. At times it feels like I’m missing out on my friends lives, but I am too stretched for time. It’s no longer about time management. It’s about making a logical and reasonable decision about how I maintain friendships. One of that is accepting that I, like my friends, will move in and out of each others lives at points and it’s nothing personal.

4. There may be some people or places I’ve met or been to for the last time

If you felt a little tinge of sadness reading point 3, I’m imagining that you’re having that strange “sour” heart wrenching feeling when you understand what this one means. I don’t have infinite years, months, hours and days. There are people who I’ll meet for the very last time in my life and I’ll never meet them again. Same for places I visit. The next time I return it may be different or I may never make it there ever just because there are limitations and priorities in my life that will be higher up than meeting that particular person again or visiting that place again. Sorry if this was seriously sobering. But yeah, epiphany.

5. There’s literally a limited time to spend with people that matter to me

This reality hit me hard when I read this post and realised that there are only so many years and weeks left in my life. Even less if I consider the years and weeks left for me to co-exist with those who matter.

I’m 27. Based on the same methodology of working out an estimate used in “The Tail End”, if I’m being super optimistic, I’ll live to 90. That’s 63 years and about 3,276 weeks to go. The thing is, this isn’t a “shared” time with people that matter to me like my parents. If optimistically they live to around 90 (plus, minus couple of years). I have about an estimated 30 more years left with them. As I don’t live with them, even if I were to visit them once every single week, that’s only 1,560 times left (about 0.04% of my life). The reality is I don’t and I might only visit them around 390 times. I’ll likely only spend only about 0.01% of my life with them in the remaining days of our shared time together.

This seriously makes me sad to face reality. Is being tired really an excuse to stay home instead of making time for them?

6. I measure years in terms of baby showers and birthdays

I wrote this last year and it still applies. I only realise a year has passed when my favourite babies celebrate their birthday. I sometimes forget how old I am.

7. Parties happen in my tummy, not in ‘da club

My idea of a good time involves a place to sit down and eat delicious, savoury, amazing food till closing time at 10pm. Even the idea of free alcohol also isn’t as appealing as say when I was in my early twenties. Thanks, but no thanks. I guess this is a symptom of growing older.

8. The dark side is my bed

In my younger days, I wanted to be out all the time. The “dark side” was the seductive call of another cool party or event. Nowadays, the only “pull” I experience is the pull towards my bed. A 12 hour nap on a weekend? #YAAAASSSS

9. Weight gain is inevitable without a major and sustained lifestyle change

It used to be so much easier to jump into an exercising spree and lose a shitload of weight with determination. As the years pass, weight gain becomes an everyday reality. If I don’t make a concerted effort to sustain my lifestyle changes, I gain weight like nobody’s business. If you think its hard to lose weight at 22, try doing the same thing at 27, 30 or 45. I’m sure it only gets progressively tougher.

10. My idea of “slim” is maintaining a UK Size 10 as opposed to being an insane UK Size 8

I’m a UK 12 these days. I won’t say I’m not bothered by the weight gain, because I am. But I get over it faster. I also realise a UK Size 10 is actually a pretty good size and that “slimness” is truly subjective.

11. Modesty is actually beginning to be the norm

Boob airtime? Nope. Miniskirts? Not my choice of apparel. Sleeved wrap dresses? Yes, please. I used to be all “Have it? Flaunt it!” These days I’m protecting my seriously unimpressive assets as if they were national treasures. I guess I’m more “conservative” because this is the style I’ve grown into and appreciate. One that’s truly for myself and not the eyes of men or other women.

12. “Pricier” clothes start becoming investment pieces

I’m more likely to spend on fewer but better quality pieces that last me longer than lots of cheaper items from fast fashion brands. Maybe its because I can afford “enough” now, so I can decide how much more I can spend on something that becomes an “investment”.

13. Saving gets a lot easier

Because I’m earning a little more and more each year, it’s much easier to set aside a comfortable amount to save and still enjoy small luxuries. I’m not into the designer bag shindig, but a hearty meal at a nice casual restaurant makes me happy – and I can now afford that without compromising my personal savings plan. I guess this may change as my commitments change too and I know I’ll start adjusting accordingly.

14. Being nice has a price, but one that, I own and accept, I made a choice to pay

I used to get very bitter about choosing to be nice to others and feeling let down when I “paid” the price for it. These days I just take it as a gamble of sorts. I made a loss but I make peace with that decision I made. I won’t be exceptionally nice to those who let me down (no guilt about that) thereafter, but no use thinking I “lost out”.

15. Body aches are REAL

It’s ridiculous that for the low level of vigorous activity that happens in my life, I get the worst body aches. The irony is that I lie around and sit down so much that every part of my back and shoulders ache like a bitch. There’s no way around it. Work out? Ache. Don’t work out? Ache. I see what happened to gramps now.

16. Retro ’70s or ’80s music is actually pretty awesome

I’m not even just talking about The Carpenters or Bee Gees… Even the Mandarin ones. It’s literally music to my ears to hear a throwback playlist of old hits. I guess it won’t be long before the newer stuff starts feeling a little too foreign for my liking. (Oh no…)

17. I can put on my “extroverted facade” better

It’s not easy, but as an introvert at 27 with that many years of trying to deal with an extroverted world, it’s not as difficult with each passing year. I still want “out” during my “down times” but when I have to, I can turn it on, like for work or important occasions.

18. I am content even as I strive to be better

This is one of those weird “a-ha” moments. I’ve become more aware of what makes me happy in life and also that happiness is as transient as sadness. That understanding helps me appreciate the status quo even if I’m working towards achieving a bigger goal.

Also, just because everyone around me may think getting a promotion is ‘da bomb or getting a new Prada bag is the best thing ever, doesn’t mean that I’ll get the same satisfaction from getting those things. I have my own happy chart and it sometimes isn’t gonna be the same as everyone else’s. I’m not missing out because of that.

19. I don’t feel like I need to reassure people all the time to be a supportive friend

I used to feel pressured to say “right” things to people to be a supportive friend. These days I just throw ball back in my friend’s court. I don’t bother to fix anything for them. I don’t think it’s my role to gossip with them either. My role is to ask them questions and help them come to terms with their feelings and choices. I try to remember this and practise this as much as possible.

20. All my hobbies now take a backseat

There are so many things I’ve enjoyed through the years. Reading, blogging, latin dancing, film photography, running, playing Final Fantasy games and the list goes on. There is just too many things I like doing. I don’t have time to do it all. Everything takes a backseat now. I feel so overwhelmed by my interests that I sometimes enjoy just spazzing out in my free time.

21. I don’t have to comment on every Facebook post I disagree with

This is one thing I realise is futile and self-important. I’ve caught myself a couple of times and have deleted my post immediately after posting the reply. Honestly, I can read a different perspective, disagree with it and not need to post my opinion. Because who cares what I think anyway?

22. I don’t bother hiding my tears when I get into an argument

If I’m sad, I cry. The end. I don’t feel bad about it. I think it helps me deal with tough situations. Of course, to be responsible, I just ask for time to get it out and reassure the person I may be having an argument with that it’s okay and I’m just dealing with my emotions.

23. I realise I’m “not that special” and the beauty of it is, so is everyone else (other than a select few)

I don’t know why I had this epiphany, but I realised like, some things in life are just the way it is. “Being special” is just one of them. Yes, everyone has their strengths, weaknesses and uniqueness, but it doesn’t mean everyone is “special” and will make it big in life if they play towards their strengths. Some of us are gonna be average and at best above average. It doesn’t freaking matter. End of the day special is subjective too. Who cares. I’m just gonna do my thing and be content with life.

24. I speak to interns or colleagues and say “back then” when I refer to my first job

Because now, it’s been over ten years since my first job, so it really is “back then” for me. WHEN DID I GROW UP?

25. My selfie rate has slowed down significantly

At one point I had so many selfies tagged on Facebook because I hung out so much and camwhored like crazy. I don’t know why. I don’t see what was so special about that photo, that pose, that outfit or that make up look I did. Why did I need so many selfies and even if I did need so many to get a good one, why did I post all the rest. If I get one or two good photos from a day out, that’s good enough for me and I’ll just post those curated few.

26. Skincare is way more important than make up

I noticed this happening more in the past three years. I’ve moved towards a mostly skincare and aesthetic treatment kind of formula instead of tonnes of make up, enlarging lenses or winged eyeliner to make my eyes look super huge. I like a super natural look. Not sure if a sign of the modern times or just a personal preference. Judging by how heavy make up looks are still trending, I’d say the latter.

27. I’m already a “grown up”

“When I grow up, I wanna be _________. ” I realise that I am now already older than the people I used to fill in the blanks with and look up to back in the day. Oh man.

If you have your own “becoming an adult” epiphanies you’d like to share, please do comment below. I feel we all share similar (but still different) experiences as human beings growing in this reality, so I’d really like to hear your stories too. So yep, comment away.

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