The year I was turning 25 was the one of the toughest years of my adult life, mentally. Twenty-five was the year I thought I’d have it all figured out. I had heard so many around me say that by 25 they were married with two kids, had purchased their own home, graduated college/uni. and had landed their dream job. Prior to turning 25, I had family members reminding me that my biological clock was ticking, asking if and when I was going to have a huge wedding, if I was going back to school, etc. Turning twenty-five, was the year I felt so low about myself and where I was in life.
My birthday is in March, as we all know by now because I have talked about it so much. So in January of 2017, something inside of me began to shift, I felt unsettled, I felt like I had this ticking time bomb inside of me, my emotions where all over the place. I remember constantly saying to those around me, that I was getting “old” and how I couldn’t believe how “old” I was. I giggle now at that, how I am older now and completely find myself saying how “young” I am or how “young” I feel.
I remember always feeling alone, in my relationship and in general, I am the only one in my family who lives in the Inland Empire. By late January I left my fiancé, I had compared my relationship so much to others that I found myself wanting out because it wasn’t where I thought our relationship should be. I won’t sugar coat things either, there were issues in the relationship that were far from perfect, and these things really were the straw that broke the already mentally and emotionally exhausted break.
I was living with my cousin and then back home with my mom, not knowing what I was going to do with my life, all I knew is that for the first time in my adult life I felt like I was “putting myself first”. I was doing whatever I wanted, like getting a very questionable piercing, cutting my bangs/hair, partying with my cousins, and doing anything and everything I could to not think about turning 25.
My family threw me this huge beautiful birthday party, that started out as a surprise, until my mom spilled the beans. Even though I was walking around fearing this number, this age, I paraded around in my white dress that I claimed was my “wedding dress” because I was getting married to myself, and in my fake flower crown I handmade. I come from a huge Mexican family, partying is what we know how to do, and I loved being around family, but hated what we were celebrating because I did not feel worthy of celebration. What did I have to show for? What was worthy of celebrating? In my 25 years of life I felt as I had accomplished nothing. So that night I drank, I drank so much that I blacked out. I’m glad I remember cutting my cake and taking pics with family but I don’t remember my cousins holding my hair as I puked the bottomless tequila shots.
By now I’m sure you’re probably thinking, it sounds counterproductive right? Why would I leave my fiancé if I felt like I should be married with kids by 25? Why act so reckless if what I felt I needed and wanted was stability? The answer is complex, all I know is that at the time the only thing that made sense was to run. Run as fast and as far as I could to avoid these feelings of failure. Perhaps I thought that if I didn’t have a fiancé then that would explain why I wasn’t married yet, and why I didn’t have kids yet. Perhaps if I was single that meant that society, family and friends wouldn’t question why I didn’t have all the things I thought I should by 25.
I found myself crying a lot, I was depressed, I was at my lowest, and for the most part I played the “I’m happy to be free” card and role pretty damn well. I had those around me convinced I was fine, I was happy, I was just living my life as I wanted. Behind closed doors and when I was alone, I cried, I hated being alone, I hated having to confront all my emotions which is why I always filled my time with family and friends. To be alone meant to confront what was really running from, myself, and to realize that I had abandoned my life because of what society made think I needed to have.
I have nothing but love, appreciation, and endless amount of gratitude for my fiancé, he fought ferociously and lovingly for me. He was there, ready to accept me back in with loving arms when I returned. I had hurt him, and I still cry just as I am now writing all this out, because I was so lost that year and I hurt him and those around me.
When I finally got passed turning 25, and I realized it wasn’t so scary, I was NOT old, and finally said F**k what society thinks I should have, I became much happier and THAT was liberating.
I realized once again that I have never cared what others thought of me, so why did I care now. What I have come to understand it was that while I thought I too wanted these things, I don’t care when they come to me, or when I finally obtain these things. I believe in that everything happens for a reason, and that the Universe and Creator’s timing is never wrong. I have learned that what is for me is for ME, and nothing can change that.
This year broke me, but I have spent the last few years building and growing. Since that time, I have started a business, some relationships I grew out of while some grew stronger, I have really stepped into my power and learned the art of self love and found a community. I AM SUCCESSFUL and I have so much more than I ever thought I would after turning 25!
I am back to enjoying birthdays, and I grow excited about their arrival. I am me, and this is my life, and I am more than content and happy with the way it is going and the way it has turned out.
I used to brush off and jokingly say I had a quarter life crisis, but the truth is I did and I was both anxious and depressed, and it is okay to admit this. It is my truth, I got help, and I have healed from this year. And I continue to do the work because I know that while it may have been an isolated time, I know that my mental health is important and because of this I am where I am today. Just a few days away from turning 29 almost 30 and I am okay with that, I am happy to start another journey around the sun 🌞