In the marathon of everyday life, there isn’t a minute we stop. Until and unless another bright day of our masked happiness and hypocrisy passes by.
We are all happy, peaceful individuals with perfect lives. Our Instagram feeds are full of life and fun, our Facebook profiles mark our overwhelming success, and our Snapchat stories is the evidence of our vibrant, colourful journey.
It’s not until night time that the dark demons of reality visit us. The insecurities that keep knocking, but those we never let in. The hurt that wants to stay, but that has no room to do so. The imperfections that we keep hiding, because everyone has a happy life except you. Right? NOPE.
Every 20-something year old is as broken as you. They can’t sleep at night. They are visited by their fears, their lost love, by their alternate career choices that look so desirable now and finally the question, "What am I doing with my life?"
Here are a few things that every 20-something feels and trust me, it's absolutely normal.
#1 Please don’t ask me what I am doing in my life.
We hate that question. Because we really don’t know. Some days are bright, warm and full of love. Some days I am a lonely person longing for it. Few days I am the brand ambassador of successful women, and other days I am the "if-you-don’t-listen-to-your-parents-that’s-how-you-will-end-up" kind.
Some days I am strong, confident and independent. Other days I am attention-seeking, clingy and needy. Some days it’s all sorted. Other days I am clueless. Some days I am the order in the chaos, other days I am the chaos.
Give me some time. I might be a mess now. But eventually I will be fine. I don’t need to know all the answers now. No, I don’t know where I will be 5 years down the line.
No, I don’t know when I am getting married or who I am getting married to. No, I don’t have a plan. And no, I am not scared.
#2 Dear mom and dad, I love you
Mom and dad, I love you. I might not have chosen the career you wanted me to. I might have rejected a whole lot of guys that you chose for me. May be the guy I fell in love with doesn’t match your expectations. I might be in love with a guy who belongs to another religion.
I might not have been able to fulfil all your dreams. I might be earning less than what you expect of me. I might have left a few of your dreams unfulfilled. I might not have been the ideal daughter. I often think how different life would be if I did everything like I was told. But not listening to you did not mean I was disrespecting you or that I disregarded you.
I love you and I always will.
#3 Dear ex boyfriend who left me
As happy as I appear to be, as comfortable as I look, there are times I miss you terribly. I flinch at every guy’s touch now. I no longer trust people. The word commitment scares me. Love no more reminds me of happy smiles. I look at things more carefully, my perceptions are masked by the fear of deceit and cheat, and my heart too scared to let anyone in.
I am angry, I am disappointed, I still miss you. I will keep missing you, I will hide the pain with a tiny smile on my face and tint of confidence but will never come back to you.
Some come as gifts in life, some as angels and you came as the most difficult lesson. Thank you.
#4 To the judgmental society
Just because I PARTY, it doesn’t mean my beliefs and values are as dark as the night.
Just because I wear short dresses, doesn’t mean that’s the length of my ethics. Just because I drink , don’t take the liberty of questioning the way my parents raised me. Just because I am opinionated, it doesn’t make me a rebel.
I am opinionated because it frees me from the cage of hypocrisy. I am a feminist because I want my rights, not because I hate men. I long for equality not superiority.
I don’t want you to respect me because I am the weaker sex, or because I need help. Respect me for me, my individuality , my personality, for my thoughts, for my opinions, for my elegance, for my beauty.
I need respect, not help. I repeat. I need respect, not help.
No doubt, 20’s is one of the most stressful times of your life. There are self doubts, borderline identity crisis, temporary people, heartbreaks, disappointments, dissatisfying career choices, family pressure for marriage etc. But this is also the time when you will grow. When you will be on your own. You will start taking responsibilities, you will start facing your fears, you will learn to accept your mistakes and correct them.
It's that time of your life that you will look back as the transforming phase. The phase when you lived with more questions than answers. When you had more self doubt than confidence. When the number of people who left were more than those who stayed.
It's no big deal to not have it all sorted, at least you are trying your best. It's not a big crime to have chosen your career or partner, at least you are brave enough to bear the consequences of your actions, instead of living with a series of regrets like "I should have and I could have".
It's not a sign of embarrassment to get cheated on or having your heart broken. What matters is that you healed yourself. So for now enjoy the confusions. Make mistakes, make lots of them. Learn from them. The missing pieces will find their way back to you, your broken heart will start loving again, and the chaos will settle down in no time.
The demons that visit you at night tell you the truth. Don’t be ignorant enough to silence them with the lie that you convince yourself with every morning. Let the truth sink in. Embrace your fears and let your insecurities talk to you. People who love you will love you with your imperfections.
Embrace your imperfections like your crown. Like the one you want the world to see. Not the one you wear in the dark, with no one around.
Some day when you will look back, there will be pride in your heart and smile on your face as you recollect your journey from confusion to clarity, from messy to maturity and from being broken to being oh-so-beautiful.