Imagine sitting on the edge of your bed playing out parts of your life that you just knew would be so different. Imagine sitting there thinking about all the failed goals you set and BOOM;you’ve worked yourself into an anxiety attack.
More often than none, I find myself looking back over my life and remembering the goals I set for myself at the age of 10. I had this big idea of what my life would look like, not knowing that the universe had its own plans for me. Even though I played a part in the choices I made that lead to unsuccessful goal planning, it still all manifested itself the way the universe saw fit. Now here I am, having a crisis before 30 because I was “suppose” to have so much shit done before 30 or at least I thought that was what society told me.
Ideally, I should’ve been finished with my bachelor’s degree at the age of 20/21. Shortly after that I should’ve been walking the stage with a master’s degree, and then sitting pretty in the career of my choice. I mean that’s how society paints the picture that we should see. Except society neglected to point out that race and socioeconomic status plays a role in that (let me be clear there are many Black women from poor families and neighborhoods who exceed this society expectation) I however; was not one of them. I didn’t get my degree until I was damn near 25. I took the scenic route in undergrad. Procrastination, mixed with bullshit, mixed with depression, and a whole bunch of other things really delayed the process for me. I hit so many bumps in the road; I’m surprised my wheels haven’t fallen off. They’ve been deflated many of times but somehow, I’ve been able to patch them up and keep on driving.
At the age of 10 I also made these big plans of being madly in love with somebody’s child and running off to get married and have babies. I just knew at the age of 23 I’d be giving birth to a brown eyed baby with lips a pink as bubble gum. He would’ve been my first son and I was going to name him some white person’s name because I knew that black boys with common names were often overlooked and categorized. I was supposed to be living life, yet the year I was turning 23 I was committed to the psych ward for a failed suicide attempt. Damn, how the fuck did I end up there? At this point, I had decided that death over life was the best option for me. I was at odds end with my mother, I was desperately in need of a father, and my friends at the time didn’t realize that the loudest one in the room was crying out for attention because I was feeling unwanted, defeated and cheated.
That was the year of rebuilding, rebranding and recommitting myself to living. Here I was falling apart, and in these moments, I could always remember myself thinking about what my 10-year-old self said and how I failed her miserably because I hadn’t reached the goals she so desperately wanted. I felt like shit. Where do you even go from here? As cliché as this sounds the only way to go from here was up.
I want to apologize to my 10-year-old self for setting up big expectations not realizing that at 10 life had so much in store for me that I had not planned for. I didn’t plan for my life to be fucked up at all, but when I think back on it, if not me then who?
I’m not where I said I would be but looking back on what life threw at me, I’m damn sure not where they told me I would be either.
So, to society, I say fuck your age expectations. Fuck those standards that only address black and white but nothing in between. Realistically some of us won’t live up to society’s age timeline and that’s perfectly okay. Delay is not denial. 1000 no’s only means that yes is soon to come, and “Your Life’s Purpose is Greater than your Current Circumstance”. I can say that because I know what a broken heart and failed dreams feel like, I also know that with faith all things are possible.
So, while I’m not married, and I didn’t get the picket fence white house, or the two parent household growing up, I get to use me for the good of others. I get to be the beacon of light to so many women and 10-year-old me knew I would be something, but I don’t think she imagined that this is the something we would grow to be.
If you’re reading this, then that means you’ve made it to the end of my post and that you now know that everything that glitters ain’t gold for me. You also know that with faith, your wildest dream can come true. I hope that you look at what you have accomplished and don’t dwell on the things you haven’t. I pray you see brighter days and that the universe opens and pours blessings into your life and that you live fruitfully and abundantly.
- The almost 30-year-old who doesn’t give a fuck about what THEY said I should be.