Being a twenty-something is no easy task. We graduate from college or university, try to figure out a career that we will enjoy, move out of our parent’s house, pay off our student loans, balance work and social life, travel to as many places as we can while we are still ‘single’, figure out how to be an adult and carry on a somewhat intellectual conversation at the dinner table, learn how to be wise with our money and invest smartly because we are told to start saving for retirement…so on and so forth…all the while, hoping to find the one person that we are meant to spend the rest of our lives with, and going through as little heartbreak as possible.
Of course, some of us have more bumps than others through this 20s phase. I myself have had quite the adventurous journey thus far, but in each circumstance, I found a positive – the silver lining. I would not be where i am today if it weren’t for all the experiences, both positive and negative, that have happened.
When I was 22, I went through my first heartbreak. 2 years later, my dearest and most loving mother passed away from cancer. In the same year, I found love again and thought I would someday marry him. I wasn’t too content with my job at the time but thought it didn’t matter since it paid decently well. A year and half rolled by, and I found myself single again, unsure of what to do with my career, and where i belonged. What did i decide to do? I put my job on hold and traveled to Europe and Morocco for 2.5 months. It was one of the best decisions I made and the most liberating experiences of my life.
After I came back from traveling, I was still lost and unsure of what to do. Yes I indeed did some soul-searching, learned a lot about myself and made a few friends along the way. But it didn’t answer my question of what I was meant to do in this world and how to become a happier person. I wasn’t clinically depressed or anything, but i wasn’t as happy as i could possibly be.
I realized that was what I needed to do. Stop dwelling on the what ifs and the should haves of my past but instead focus on myself. I set new goals. Found a new job. Aimed for and finished a 10k race. Joined a running group. And put myself out there to meet new people again.
to a certain degree, i can say that we’ve all been through the ups and downs we call Life. it doesn’t matter what other people say or tell you to do. what matters is your attitude towards it. i found that surrounding myself with positive people was very important. i went to the friends that i could count on, who would understand me and be supportive of whatever i decided to do. it’s okay to drown yourself in tears on a bad day, when you can’t tell whether it is your own tears flowing down or the rain pouring over you or whether it’s the water gushing down under the shower. we just need to bounce back. as the old cliche goes, what doesn’t kill us only makes us stronger. but i like to think of it as, what didn’t kill me made me wiser and better as a person, to prepare me to meet that amazing person one day.