I turned 28 two months ago. Usually, I’d write a blogpost to commemorate but I wasn’t in the right place mentally at the time.
I am now. What does 28 mean to me? It’s a question I’ve struggled with but also a question that’s very easy. 28 is familiar, like an old sweater. Like I’ve spent all my life waiting to be 28. Like I was born to be 28. I’ve never felt this way about any other age. Does this make sense?
Physical identity meant a great deal to me when I was 28 years old. I had almost the same kind of relationship with my mirror that many of my contemporaries had with their analysts. Don DeLillo, Americana
The age of “unlearning”. The age of courage. Of being able to unpack the baggage, the myths, the cliches, the “home training”. They were useful…once. When we were younger and life was easier with a playbook, a rulebook. But life’s so much complicated. And it’s so much work to be likable. And how do I know I’m doing it right, sef?
28 is checking my stereotypes and prejudices and privileges. 28 is the wonder I feel when I give the benefit of doubt and realize someone I thought a stock character is actually so much more interesting.
28 is understanding my parents again. Recognizing their flaws and my blamelessness. And forgiving them still. Forgiving them because they knew not what they did. Forgiving them because I might still make those mistakes with my own children. 28 is understanding that my parents believed everything they told me, even if all those “truths” now prove to be false. It was their truth. What’s mine?
28 is eyebrows that will never be on fleek and the impatience to sit still for a manicure.
28 is recognizing the imposter syndrome in others. 28 is subduing mine.
28 is finding my happiness in myself and in things I have control over. 28 is realizing I can’t influence some circumstances or other people’s behavior but I can influence my response. Still. 28 is saying to my darlings, “You make me happy”. Because “I choose to respond positively to your actions and be happy” isn’t quite as romantic. Plus, it’s a weird thing to say.
28 is worry. About the economy. About society. And 28 is hope. And optimism. And furiously making plans through the night, scribbling, typing, hoping. We can do this. We can fix it.
28 is strength and self-awareness. 28 is feeling like I’ve earned my seat at the table and the right to speak. 28 is choosing whether or not to exercise that right.
I rather like 28. 😊 What’s your favorite age?
P.s. if you haven’t read it already, I have a story up for voting. If you like it, just click the 👍🏽 button. The button doesn’t always work so you might have to try a few times. Thanks!
P.p.s. I’m doing NaNoWriMo, guys. It’s this thing where you commit to writing 1667 words of your novel every day in November. The goal is 50000 words at the end of the month. And yes, I’m utterly depressed about how far behind I am because I’m not writing all the words I should but yes, I love that I’m writing everyday and not being a wimp. Yay. *waves banner*