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Wait, When Did I Get So Old? [Confessions of a Twenty-Something]


I feel old today. I am very aware that I’m only twenty-three and someone much older would smack me for saying that, but I feel old. When did I start to worry so much? When did I have two beers and wake up hungover? When did I have to start “dealing with my life”? Does someone want to tell me when that happened? I feel like I woke up today, and I was suddenly older. I was suddenly thrusted into the “real world” and forced to deal with “adult issues.” Now, don’t get me wrong, I still watch The Bad Girls Club and live at home with my parents, so I’m not a full-blown mature adult by any stretch of the imagination, but I have also realized that I’m light years away from being the kid I used to be. And when I say “kid”, I mean a freshman/sophomore in college not like a booger-picking, paste-eating kid.

If you’re wondering what sparked this sudden epiphany, I will tell you that I went to Lollapalooza yesterday. If you are unfamiliar with what Lollapalooza is, I’ll give you the CliffsNotes version. Basically, it’s a huge music festival held in Grant Park in the city of Chicago. The festival is filled with young people. Young people on many drugs and wearing little clothing. It was literally the craziest thing I have ever been to in my life. I actually saw a naked girl. Just a butt-ass naked girl laying in the grass. It was sensory overload.

I had been looking forward to going for months! I was so stoked to see Florence + The Machine and Childish Gambino and 100 other bands, and I am still so happy that I get to check off going to Lollapalooza from my bucket list. I truly did have a fun time. However, as I literally dragged my feet from Jack White’s stage to Childish Gambino’s, I wondered when I got to be so old and crotchety. Why couldn’t I keep up with the younger kids? Why was my head throbbing? Why did I feel like I was 90-years-old? All I wanted to do was go home, curl up in my bed and sleep for a week.

But wait, I’m a twenty-something! This was my time to shine and be wild, young, and free! Why wasn’t I raving like the rest of these kids?

I was supposed to be groovin’ out and “living in the moment,” but by the end of the night, I was dying of dehydration and exhaustion. I was stressing about a paper due the next day. I was worrying about things that didn’t even matter (chalk that up to my anxiety). I should probably mention that we had been drinking since 10 AM. I should probably also mention that I am a notoriously bad day-drinker. Never figured out how people rally all day and do that, so if you’re one of those people who have mastered the art of day drinking, I commend you. It’s no easy task, but I digress.

What I’m trying to get at is that I’m still struggling to find the happy medium between “carefree youth” and “responsible adult.” My experience at Lollapalooza is just the most current and relevant example to these feelings that I’ve been having for awhile. I know that it’s possible to go to a concert and not have a panic attack while also waking up the next morning and not feel like you’re coming down from drugs, but I’m not sure how to get there. I know that it’s possible to go out on the weekends and get a little goofy and still pay your bills, but I don’t know if I can find that balance. Nor do I know if I want to find that balance. I want to be a kid, but I want to be an adult! I want to be independent and get an awesome writing job, but I also want to take a trip whenever I want! I realize that these notions are pretty selfish and far-fetched, but as a twenty-something, I feel there is nothing but room for overthinking and mass confusion.

There is no doubt that I am nervous to make a full transition into “the real world,” and I know that this is a gradual process, but I’m antsy. I’m not a fan of the gray area of anything. I need “this” or “that.” I need “black” or “white.” If you’re like me, you know how difficult this weird, uncertain limbo stage is, and you’re feeling the weight on your shoulders too. You feel this pressure to “get your shit together” even if that pressure is only coming from your own brain. I know deep down that eventually I’ll figure this whole thing called “life” out, and I’m more than certain you will too. A good friend once told me, “Sometimes, all you can do is just breathe.” So let’s just take a deep breath, guys. We’ll figure it out sooner or later.

Katie is finishing up her undergrad at North Central College in Naperville, Illinois. She enjoys wasting hours on Facebook and tweeting things no one cares about. When asked the question, “Do you do marathons?” She promptly responds, “Of course! Which show?” Follow her @KatieGarrity! Or read her personal blog where she talks about Ryan Gosling and hummus a lot here!

Katie is a Web Content Publisher for Launch Digital Marketing. She graduated with a degree in English from North Central College in Naperville, Illinois. She enjoys traveling, reality TV, and coffee--lots of coffee.