Does anyone have a crystal ball I can borrow? An official and certified future teller extraordinaire, such as Derick Acorah, Cilla Black or Jesus in a glassy ball? One of the Mystic Meg variety that is going to tell me exactly what is going to happen in the future, on a daily if not hourly basis?
I mean, I don’t need to know everything. Just some sort of hint as to the direction I should be moving in, because I’m pretty sure the road entitled ‘Lack of Responsibility Close’ is not where I want to relocate my dream-home Pintrest board and I to. Escape to the country it is not. Hefty mortgages ensue on this street and debt collectors have licence to linger under street lamps and threaten you with clipboards, ball point pens and far more information than banking apps can actually provide.
I mean, I’m not exactly living a life of attempted responsibility. I picked up, I left and I took up my position on the other side of the world with eagerness and pure escapism. No one in Bali could tell me to get to work on time. No one in Lombok could tell me I owed them money and shouldn’t be going to the Topshop sale. No one in Kuala Lumpur could tell me that I should put petrol in my car before the light comes on and not after, and no one in Australia can force me to stay inside instead of going for cocktails. I dream about the future but I live in my insensible now, and spend what I’ve got on unnecessary and irrelevant things, such as the recent purchase of fruit-shaped bunting, and my hunt for souvenir espresso cups everywhere I travel to. Living existentially beyond my means, convincing myself I am in fact the secret millionaire and everything is going to be a-ok, and I do in fact live in a musical. Having said this, I have become better at saving money on the other side of the planet but still manage to slip in the odd obscure melon themed purchase.
I received a text from one of my closest friends back in England that informed me she had passed her driving test 10 years ago. Things like this keep happening. Reminders that I am not actually a 16 year old girl whose only responsibility is to scam money out of my parents, and spend majority of my time trying to make tattoo artists, off-license workers and bouncers believe that I am 18. But I am in fact a 27 year old woman who knows a lot of people a lot younger who own actual buildings, have given birth to tiny human beings and have active savings accounts. The most expensive thing I own is my laptop (the car I recently sold was worth substantially less/please don’t steal my laptop) which has definitely lost its value since I have spilt multiple flavours of yogurt on the keyboard.
I’ve noticed amongst my friends, and when I say friends I mean people I happen to be ‘friends’ with on Facebook and have absolutely no idea when the last time we spoke was, if ever; that as you quickly approach 30 you become sensible, and start to make decisions about your life. Actual life decisions, not decisions that include putting money into a savings account, and then taking it out the weekend after to pay for cocktails and a life size cardboard cutout of Robert Pattinson for your best friends secret Santa present. Getting ID’ed on rare occasions is considered a massive victory for my skin, but hangovers now last three days, and I’m pretty sure no one has seriously proposed marriage to me.
I feel the closer I approach to 30, the more people are expecting these sensible decisions to encroach, and that they should be the main goals I should aspire to embrace in my life. Of course one day I want a family, things I’m actually responsible for, a home that I paid for, and visits to a roast dinner establishment that serves a decent vegetarian meal on a Sunday, but these aren’t everything.
(Except the roast. That is everything.)
Travelling has always been my dream. For as long as I can remember I knew that I was a massive fidget and wanted to see the world. Now that’s not my only dream, and its also a dream that is a lot easier to have if you are actually good at saving money; which I am not. Far from it, I am so bad at it I had to transfer money to my Mother in order to reasonably save for this escapade, and instead of putting my student loans away so I could put a deposit on a house like some people I have known, I went to Thailand and bought my weight in Pad Thai and tie dye clothing. I’ve absolutely no idea what I want to do with my life job-wise, a question I will address in a later post, but a career is not something I’ve ever been able to settle on, been focused on and much like a gender neutral Peter Pan, I don’t quite fancy the idea of conventionally growing up.
Though equally, I do want to. I do day dream about a family and a home, but I am so stuck between adulting and an attempt at staying twenty forever that I ignore my bills on a regular basis, but am also obsessed with collecting images of fancy front doors on my Pintrest board. Fancy front doors are definitely an adult contemplation, one that figures profoundly in my optimistic future self and I reserve no judgment for that; as unrealistic as that dream may be on my current saving schedule. Look at my board and you will see a house imagined without a single practical adornment in mind. I want my own place, I want to settle and be able to decorate how, and as weird as I want. But I also want to go to a beach with no one on it and drink rum out of a coconut and not speak to anyone about anything sensible.
(I do acknowledge however that this post isn’t painting me in a favourable light to potential employers or future boyfriends. But for the sake of my CV, bank account and desire to reproduce one day; I am committed to what I enjoy, and what allows me to experience the things in life I want to, and I know how to work a washing machine sometimes, so I mean it’s a win-win situation.)
Why am I even worrying about this??
No age is the right age for anything! Life happens, can we just deal with that please? Public pressures are actual dicks like the people that create them.
There are so many people out there who aspire to go to as many countries as they can, or all the other possible aspirations that people are capable of dreaming up that I can’t even list here and are utterly wondrous. These people don’t think of the rat race back at home and they should also be applauded along side the people that do think about it. The world, though so fractured right now, is a more open place to them through the realm of possibility. In this time of breakage we shouldn’t be condemning and assuming each others choices. There is no longer a typical future path for anyone, no fifties template we should adhere to. Of course there will always be judgment, who are we as human beings if we don’t judge each other for our actions, lives, outfits and Facebook posts? But no one path is the correct one and we are in a position to at least try to curate our own life stories.
My dreams vary on a daily basis, sometimes they are wall paper and sometimes they are jet skis. Right now, you try standing on a secluded beach, or on top of a mountain with your new friends and thinking that’s wrong? Love, love and more love, of every variation, life, a man, an experience, and I have had the most brilliant and loving times with all of these. This social pressure to become a ‘official adult’ in a time when we have so many opportunities available to us, whatever age we are, is a waste of precious thought. I can dream about both things if I want, all the things in fact and you can’t stop me. I can travel the world whilst thinking about my future human beings, and I can buy a fridge with a future love, and still think about the countries I want to get lost in.
I can do whatever I want.
I get so internally tied over what I am pressured to know about my future, but really the lines between the two, for me at least are blurred.
Should we not celebrate these victories for people where we have the ability to pick what we want to do and when we want it, and not question that person’s life? We should celebrate every direction of the life map we go in. Yes, we all have to work hard for everything, that is something that will never change, but if you are willing to do the time so you can complete that delicious crime, then what’s the problem? I’m willing to put the effort in.
I don’t have to pick travel or settling down, I can do both when the time is right; and this quite frankly is no ones business but me, my bank account, passport control, and my biological clock. No ones lives are perfect or ideal, and thinking I need a Mystic Meg intervention because of social dictations of age and responsibility, isn’t a fair pressure to apply to myself, or to anyone. Its a notion that shouldn’t exist today.
We are no lesser people for picking any direction in life, but we are lesser for condemning those who pick one that’s different.
So guess what; I have an overactive imagination, an overdraft and ovaries,
how I choose to use these things, is up to me.
So just wait and see.