Soon, I will be turning 29 and entering the last year of my 20’s. I have found that my late 20’s have been such a confusing time. Having recently gone through two of the most stressful years of my life (so far), I have noticed that I’m already showing signs of aging. And I think there is this weird societal pressure for women around aging.
A lot of people are so sad to reach 30. I wish I could skip over 29 and go right to it. You know why? Because aging in your 20’s is just kind of awkward.
Society says: When you’re in your 20’s you’re not supposed to have gray hair or any wrinkles. Everything should remain perky, despite the number of children you have birthed and nursed. You should be relatively thin, and everything should be tight. Not to mention, it is a requirement that you stay up to date on all current fashion trends. Including heels when toting babies.
Reality: False. All of this stuff is so false.
Women, some of this is true for your early 20’s. Enjoy it while you can. Also, all of this is true for an indefinite amount of time when you are Beyonce or Jessica Alba, but there’s only one of each of them in the world, and it’s not me, and it’s not you.
When I reached my mid-twenties, something happened. My metabolism turned against me and I can no longer eat whatever I want, whenever I want to without consequence (be it a few lbs or heartburn give or take the food choice.) I’ve tried to cut back but it doesn’t work because I love to eat. I also love bread and refined sugars. Sue me. So, I toyed with exercising, but that makes me hungry, so I continued eating my breads and refined sugars some more. Then, bam. I’m knocked up and hungry all the time, and what better time in life to not exercise? Then come the babies, followed by the baby stress, no sleep, emotional highs and lows. With each child comes the stress of each child. Enter wrinkles and a few gray hairs. Also, with babies, I can’t dress nice. I just can’t. Forget my style, it’s not coming back for a few years because….easy access to the ta-tas is necessary for the first six months, there’s the spit up, blowouts, children throwing yogurt, spilling juice, and pulling on my shirts/pants/jewelry/hair for a given number of years. So, inevitably–wrinkles, gray hair, baggy under eyes, even in my 20’s.
I think that a woman gains more confidence in her 30’s because these traits are acceptable at this age. When you’re in your 30’s your supposed to have a little more “wear” to you. It’s honestly quite a beautiful thing. However, if you are showing “wear” prior to the golden 30’s…it sucks right?
Well, I have huge bags under my eyes, no matter how much sleep I get each night. I have pulled a record number of gray hairs from my head in the last year, and things are no longer tight or perky. I swore I’d always hold onto my sense of style, but you know what? I don’t even know what the kids are wearing these days. I’m still rocking my college sweatshirts and a few pairs of jeans from about 7 years ago. I get overwhelmed when going into a clothing store. The last time I went into Forever21, I couldn’t decide if the piece of clothing I was holding was a skirt, a dress, or a tube top. Also, I’m pretty sure I bought some type of clubbing dress from H&M and wear it as a camisole. Terrifying. And crop tops? Who can wear those? No one. Ever. No matter what your age. Just put it back and leave the store. And why do clothes go from cheap, Frat boy or Jersey Shore attire to grandma pants with nothing in between, unless you have a million dollars to spend? I see you Anthropologie. I see you Free People. I like your style, but I am not spending $100 on a t-shirt that my kid is going to puke on. Not to mention, $100 can pay for my ever increasing water bill because of the loads of laundry I have begun to slowly drown in.
Ah…my 20’s have been amazing. I graduated college, married my husband, had two beautiful babies, and sent three more to heaven. I’ve moved across the country, purchased a home, and made some seriously wonderful friendships. My 20’s were good to me. I have one year of them left, however, unlike so many I have spoken to, I will be glad when they are done. Twenty-nine, let’s do this. And 30, my wrinkles and I are coming for you.