What we do, when we’re 22

What we do, now that we’re really 22

While it would be nice to dress up like hipsters and make fun of our exes, uh uh, uh uh – 22 is much more daunting that it appears. Not as scary as dirty thirty or as liberating thrifty fifty but it’s got its revelations.

You can legally drink in on planet Earth

I thought this might be one of the perks. One year into legal drinking in the US is four in Australia. For me, 22 is when I came upon the revelation that, I need sleep most nights, and one night on the town is enough – or else dance floor nap time will ensue.

Even those who insist on bendering on, wake up with a stench of regret and an extra wrinkle for every rum.

It was at some point between 21 and 22 that alcohol became a relaxation technique more than a socialising mechanism – wine became associated with bath time rather than pole dancing – debatably less fun.

You thought you knew what you wanted to do

But you don’t. You’ve finished uni, you’re a qualified tradesman or been in the business long enough to be managing the tweens…and BOOM! It smacks you in the face – like, who invented working 9-5 (which at some point became inverted because we all know it’s more like 5-9).

Do I really want to do this for the rest of my life? Am I panicking prematurely? Should I just go back and start again?

Lucky for us, we have a fair amount of time on our side. But, who wants to hang out with the optimistic and excitable 18 year-olds at O week?

Being single starts to get embarrassing

High school sweethearts make you sick with envy and fresh couples in their ‘honeymoon period’ make you gag, but deep inside you’re crying a little tear of regret, because what did you do so wrong to end up single and 22? #amIright

Are you past the awkward high school romances and glad to be done with love notes in maths and ticks in boxes next to ‘do you like me? Yes? No? maybe?’, but you’re not quite on the doorstep to ‘will you marry me?’. Some of the general public will tell you, you’ve got your whole life ahead of you’ (with a slight air of smite and pity) and others will tell you to ‘make the most of being alone’ (probably while they plan their next couples retreat to San Sebastian), so why then am I know responsible enough to pay my own health insurance but all of a sudden am paying more to stay a healthy loner than one half of a healthy couple?

Paying for shit sucks

Alcohol

Phone bill

Rent

Groceries

Monthly train ticket

Petrol

Car insurance

Loan repayments (for that ridiculously expensive car you had to have)

Health Insurance (optional)

Since when did I have to think about having my bank balance sit above $0?

The day I turned 21, my mum sat me down, gave me a pat on the back and said, ‘Today is the day you get your own health care card’. What she neglected to mention was that it dragged along with it, a $150 a month payment. All so that I don’t end up sidewalk bound if I trip on my own toes and require an ambulance to put me back together – one time.

You’re only getting older

You’re next milestone birthday is 25 a.k.a a quarter of a century #thumbsdown. After that, you’re thirty and god forbid if you aren’t married, expecting a child and have maintained a successful career. Next comes 40, a last chance to dance on the table without ridicule. 50 is a respectable age, but you best be wise and the only time you get credit for getting old is by 100 when queenie sends you a note of congratulations.

No more coming of age to look forward to, no more mountains to climb or bottles to pop – I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling 22.

image credit: financialmoneytimes.com

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