Why 20-somethings know next to nothing.

January 22nd, 2013

My mom says that as a kid I was always eager to grow up and to get to the next thing. I was never satisfied being 5 until I was 6 and I was never satisfied being 6 until I was 7. I always wanted to be able to do things myself and be self-sufficient. I was anxious to just ‘get there already.’ I know that’s not unusual, but this attitude has carried even beyond my childhood. In being a 20-something, I have longed for the days when I would be a 30-something. In fact, I think I’ve been longing to be 30 since I turned 20.

So why is that? Well my quick answer has always been that nobody takes a 20-something seriously. But the truth is that 30 is the age where I felt like I could finally take myself seriously. I might finally be able to trust some of the things I’ve come to think I know over the years.

And in all honesty I think I was right. I’m 30 now and my universe actually makes sense way more now than it ever has before, and certainly eons more sense than it did at 20. Sometimes I’m just amazed that I’m even alive after such a turbulent and ignorant youth. I wonder to myself how I ever managed to get up in the morning with such a limited view. And I have to confide that the most horrific thing I can imagine is having the past 30 years of experience stripped from me. To go back to such an unsure and ill-educated state seems like a fate worse than death. I’ll take grey hairs and wrinkles, thankyouverymuch, if it means that I’m moving the veil of ignorance aside.

I don’t suppose I would know the difference if somehow all of my memories were stripped from me, but what frightens me is the idea that I might then spend more time than necessary saturating the universe with my ignorance. I’m already embarrassed and ashamed of my past self for being so know-it-all and prideful so much of the time. Ignorance is such a horrible injustice to reality.

And now that I’m 30, and am experienced with the myriad of methods in which I might be compelled to humility, I hate that it’s more than likely that I’m STILL floundering in ignorance. And so guess what that means? 30 is my new 20.

Can I just be 40 already?

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