EDGE OF TWENTY TWO

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Thinking of how I deserve an honorary award for not blowing off my head at 22. Competency worth a veneration believing I have been quite competent in handling the second year of my second decade. I don’t need to blow my own trumpet but sorry, I have done it already . The age of twenty two has several twists and turns and keeping it check all the way is not like eating marshmallow. This is the age where one gets plated formerly, deeply into adulthood like iron and steel; the thorns and horns begin sprouting on one’s being. It is one of the life-changing moments where one feels pushed with the notion that they need to prove to the world they exist and should be recognized. Sounds easily achievable but wait until you realize the struggles a 22 year old goes through, some utterly despicable but you can’t put up a blame, can you?

So here’s the special thing about this, I’m not talking about something I haven’t experienced but it’s something that I’m quite sure most folks do not know nor understand. I’m speaking out for the 22 year old and I surely deserve a thank-you or even a God-bless-you kind of response for that reason. Haha, just saying.

They told you quarter life crisis begins at 25? Well, all I can say about that is that either they were forced to just obey the century rule or they simply lied to you, take your pick. I pick the lie. I honestly think they told me an absolute white lie. I’m not 25 yet but I’m so certain, with so much assurance and conviction that it won’t be as itchy as my 22. In fact, it’s gonna be spiced up and warm, not  forgetting that’s exactly how I described 22 when I was 17. Haha, but I suppose that was just a teenage illusion. This time, I’m saying it as an adult and I’m certain that it’s factual.

This is what they fed me about 25. “It is a crisis!, a savage that rips you apart and leaves you breathless and desperate.” But crash that thought! 25 might be a mountain with icy spikes that are hard to break and climb but 22, 22 is a huge storm that pounces right through your head and crashes at your brains. Well, it’s not as bad as it may sound but all I’m trying to say is that 22 is much more of a crisis than 25 and if 25 is a crisis, then I guess 22 is a bigger CRISIS!

“Blonder hair, flat chest TV says, bigger is better South beach, sugar free Vogue says, Thinner is better.” You don’t realise the pressures of these words until you get to twenty two and start possessing the features of womanhood and indeed Beyonce puts it as plain as it is, ‘Pretty Hurts’. At 22, those pressures are bound to to push you face down to the ground and if you back down, you’re defeated, there and then.

If you think life is unbearable at teenage-hood, talk to a 22 year old and you’ll sure love your life after the talk. At least teenagers still have the privilege to choose who and what they want to be in future. At 22, one has to decide and stand by their decisions or else life will decide and seal your fate. You have to decide and be certain about what you study,  the career to pursue, you have to decide on your future and build a foundation, this is the hardest part by the way. Surprisingly, you need to put a decision on every aspect of life, even your sexual activities and preferences need to be decided on. You need to decide on whether you’re going for a taco or a sandwich cause both is too much, only one is required.

A 22 year old got to make a great step in leadership. Know whether they’re leading from the rear or the front. You know, people do not realize they are left behind until they see others ahead of them. I thought I was comfortable with my education and modest lifestyle until the moment I realized I had age mates building condos in Manhattan and empires in Seattle, not literally, of course, but that’s how much I felt left behind and here is exactly where the struggle begins. You feel very much challenged and you strive so hard to reach your goals and at least a level of recognition, since that too, is considered success nowadays.

Growing up is a wonderful and tremendous experience. We all know life is not all rosy. You don’t have to own fancy cars or even a sax to make your life musical. It’s all about the ups and downs and how you choose to handle them. 22 might be a difficult bone to chew but I’d never disentangle it from my life even if I had the chance to. The life lessons I’ve gotten all through my life cannot be compared to the ones I have received at 22. With great satisfaction,  I give a big THANK YOU to my 22. It has made me understand what I am to expect in the future and made me realize the bitterness of quarter life crisis which I’m hopeful now that I can face without fear or hesitation, BIG UP 22.

 

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Annie Odeka
The beauty of my youth is what drives my desire to grow older because I'm always convinced that when it fades, there will be a whole new chapter of beauty waiting; the beauty of old age. Sounds ironical, right? But that's what I'm made of. I'm a puzzle that's difficult to solve. The out-going introvert and the fire that cannot be quenched with water. It's hard to be me at times but my enthusiasm for life always keeps me tracking and reminding me that I gotta be just me and nobody else. That's the reason why I like to show to the world what I'm made of and the adventures this world has taken me through.

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