I attended a wedding for one of my best friends a few weeks ago. She’s the first of my closest friends to get married and I won’t lie, it did cause a bit of a Menty B.
That’s Gen Z language for a mental breakdown, in case you’re wondering.
Ok, that’s a bit dramatic, but it did send me into a form of shock at just how fast life is moving.
It seems like yesterday we were in our GCSE music class in our school uniform, gossiping in the corner. Or only a few years ago since we were out every weekend in Liverpool having the time of our lives.
Where did those years go that she’s now someone’s wife?!
Should I be settled down by now?
With her being only one month older than me, it made me think a little about my own life. Should I be thinking about marriage and settling down? Am I weird for not being ready to do that yet?
I’m starting to lose count at the number of engagements, weddings and babies that are now showing up on my Instagram and Facebook feeds. Friends from university, friends from school, even younger people from around town.
Do they think I’m immature and lagging behind since I’m still renting and don’t have any plans to get married, have babies or settle down soon?
Why do I still feel so young?
Since I’ve been with my boyfriend for almost four years now, I often get the question from aunts and friends of my parents, or even some of my friends (always the ones who are already engaged) asking when I’m going to have a ring on my finger, when I’m going to start thinking about settling down somewhere.
But the honest truth is, I still feel so young. I feel like I’m nowhere near that age where I should be married or thinking about kids.
In all honesty, the thought of being married, owning a home and having a traditional life at 26 terrifies me.
I still have so many plans to see the world, to travel, to experience new cities and countries and someday, work for myself. Right now, I can’t see myself in a home with a 9-5 job and a car and living that ordinary everyday life.
A large part of me wants to wake up on a beach, not know where I’m going to be in the next few months and experience as much of the world as I can before I get to the stage where I want those things like a house, a stable job and a car in the drive.
The city vs urban life
I definitely think there is a huge difference between people that live in cities and people that live in the town that they grew up in.
No one I know that lives in the big cities are engaged until they’re in their mid-thirties. Less and less are having children, but if they are, they’re well into their thirties before this happens.
I couldn’t count the number of people that I know around my age or younger that live in my hometown that are engaged, already married and are having/have kids. There’s so many.
The number of people I know in London that are engaged under the age of 30? Zero.
But what’s the reason for it? Is it because most of us are renting? Because we put our careers first? Because we don’t have the disposable income for a wedding? Because we focus more on our social life? I’m not sure.
What the next five years look like for me
In five years’ time I’ll be 31. A very scary thought.
Will I be married by then? Probably not. Have kids by then? Again, probably not? Own my own home? In this housing market? Absolutely not.
But then, I can pretend the housing market is the issue here. When really, it’s the fact that I have no idea where I will be in five years’ time and no idea where I want to be in five years’ time.
And that’s more than ok with me. In fact, it makes me excited not knowing where I’m going to be in five years’ time. Life’s an adventure and I’m very much here for that.
Everyone’s journey in life is different
It goes without saying really, that we can’t pin different life moments to a specific age. Everyone’s journey though life is different and not linear.
I’ve definitely learnt this recently watching all of these life moments crop up on my Facebook feed. One of my best friends is living on the other side of the world in Australia, one is working in the Middle East following a career in music, and another just got married and lives in Ireland.
Me? I’m currently floating along in London with a fun job, but who knows when the wind is going to take me elsewhere. There’s so much of this world to experience and life to live, and I don’t plan on settling down anytime soon.