My Birthday!

I’m turning eighteen on Sunday! I’m very excited. I know I won’t feel any different, but there are a lot of new things I’ll be able to do. I’ll be able to vote in the election, drive out of state, get a tattoo or piercing on my own, and purchase a lottery ticket. Personally, I’m excited to drive and hopefully visit some friends at other schools. I also want to get a double helix piercing, but for now, I’m satisfied with admiring them from afar. I’ll be going home for the second weekend in a row, but it can’t be helped. I have to be that girl this week, my parents deserve at least that much.

Every birthday forces me to consider, “Will I do more this year?” and “Will I procrastinate less?” This year especially, there is a lot I want to accomplish. It’s allegedly a really good time for Libra, six months of prosperity that won’t return for another twelve years. Horoscopes might be fake and vague, but regardless, I feel the need to capitalize on this time. I should go to every event and club meeting. I should attend all the workshops and spend time with friends, but it’s impossible. I feel stressed, and I’m seeing it on my forehead. Instead of going to one of three information sessions hosted by the career center, I took a nap. I said I would go to the RA’s event, but remembered later I had a club meeting. For the first time in my life, I am suffering from “FOMO”, or fear of missing out. I want to be everywhere, I want to do everything, but so many events conflict. On top of that, I’ve been sick this week. I actually told the lady at Pierce that I felt terrible when she asked. It’s not from FOMO, that’s not why I came to this school. It stems more from perfectionism and utilizing all the resources available to me.

And it’s a big problem. To some extent, and definitely in other people’s eyes, all of us are perfectionists. We pushed ourselves beyond what others perceive as the limit to get here, suffered condemnation for being a “tryhard”. I think that’s why some friends were so quick to party, after realizing stress only increases after growing up. College seems like the last chance to mess around without consequences.

Everyone wants to play. Everyone wants to be a kid. I do want to be older. I want to be more responsible, more wise, more intelligent. I guess that’s what makes me the real kid though. Only kids want to be older, care about age. Only kids get excited over birthdays. Adults want to be younger, and can’t distinguish the days in their routine life.

In these last four years of being a kid, I don’t want to live like an adult. I lived like an adult last summer, so much so that I can barely remember the days that passed. I’d rather be like a kid, and redevelop the curiosity that state mandated testing and required curriculum stripped me of. I want to keep learning fun things, despite anyone else’s opinion of me. I think the most important thing that I have to make myself understand this year is that I can’t do everything I want to. That way, my mother who endured labor pains for me eighteen years ago would be a little bit more proud.