When I was a little kid, I imagined my 25 year-old self with long, straight hair, makeup caked on my face, and sporting a denim. Don't judge, I think it's because of my tita(s) (aka aunts) or other ladies in the apartment where I grew up. I also assumed I'd stay in the Philippines and be a lawyer or broadcaster or teacher. I had all these dreams wrapped inside a magical box called "childhood."
I'm 25 now, and none among these things happened. My hair is short and curly. I use makeup, and it's not cakin'. I don't wear denims. I live in the USA, and I am a full-time nurse and part-time blogger entrepreneur. I have all these realities, and I can't even imagine myself not living the life I have right now. Contemplating on how my life turned out, I couldn't be more thankful.
As you reach this age, you begin to understand what "quarter-life crisis" means. We've all had those frustrating moments, but let me tell you these 25 things you needed to hear to convince you that your 25th year is the most badass year yet!
- You no longer care about what other people think of your fashion statement, how you dress up, and why you wear torn denim jeans. Whether you follow the latest trend of wearing chokers and off shoulders, or sport a professional look with nude blouses and pencil skirts, you don't care about others' POV at all. And if you wear scarfs or boots or coats on a hot day? Gee, that's for your #OOTD and #WIW
- You learn how to love your body type. This goes to skinny and not-so-skinny people out there. Movements against body-shaming are getting noticed and it's a good time to celebrate these differences especially when your body type doesn't look like those model figures on TV and magazines. Yes, you may sometimes feel ugly browsing Kylie's feed but you give yourself a break and not *actually feel ugly*
- Or you're only insecure for about 5 minutes. It doesn't count. Your self love is way greater than what you had 5 years ago. Maturity comes with age, and apparently, so does confidence.
- Relationship status isn't a biggie anymore. You don't feel the pressure to have someone just because. No proms to attend to. No social gathering every now and then. No pressure from friends, because hey, most of you are on the same page! Let's not talk about our parents' constant questions, but really, it's a fresh air not to be bombarded by those annoying love-related Qs.
- #WorkGoals and #CareerGoals are your favorite hashtags. Because we're workaholic like that. Thanks to Instagram for making coffee and tea as the new normal, because we're so over soda and beers. With a lot of work comes lotsa cups of coffee.
- Money. While you're still struggling with your finances, most of it are just because you enjoy traveling every now and then, or you can't get enough of eating somewhere instagrammable and fancy. But really, you're not really struggling, are you?
- Bullies don't control you anymore. You're done feeling sorry for yourself. You now have the guts to tell them straight to their face what you don't like about them, or if their actions are way too irrational.
- You already acquired the superpower of telling who's fake and who's real in your life. When you know, you just know.
- Your relationship with your parents is everything in your life right now. They treat you like adult, but they still pamper you with support and trust. How amazing, right?
- You are BFF with your siblings. After years of fighting and yelling at each other, they suddenly became your partners in crime. Everything seems so real, and even though you still annoy each other, you can't deny the sibling love that grows every day.
- No friends quarrel, because guess what, your number of friends were down to half! This isn't a bad thing at all, this only means that you grew as a person and in growing, you lose people along the way.
- Dating. You know what you want, and you don't settle for less.
- Having dreams, and knowing that you'll get there. Maybe not soon, but right now, you work hard to glue your end points together. Convincing yourself isn't that hard anymore. Or maybe it still is, but recognizing that you have years ahead of you to figure it out consoles you in a way.
- You're not as lazy as when you were studying. You get things done, and nobody's stopping you.
- You look up to someone worthy of your attention. Popular artists are MEH, and bosses who inspire you are the BOMB.
- You know the importance of sleep. And everything is alright in the world when you get eight hours of uninterrupted sleep.
- Mastering to-do list is your expertise. You developed a skill of juggling your child duties, paying bills, doing groceries, and work. If you have other stuff going on, you just know you have time for it.
- Whether you binge-watch or stay home on weekends, you don't feel guilty doing so. And when somebody asks how your day off went, you smile and say you had the best weekend! You don't feel like you're missing out on something.
- Hangovers aren't your thing anymore.
- Your faith just gets stronger. It doesn't matter whether it's faith in God or faith in yourself, the thing is, you believe in the greater version of everything. Your optimism may sometimes wither but once you envision how you want your life to unfold, it reassures you.
- What you think of as complicated doesn't sound complicated at all aka your taxes, insurance, investments, savings, and all those adult stuff that you're now dealing with. Remember your old self feeling puzzled over these things? And OMG, some of your friends are even your financial advisers already!
- You're a nicer version of yourself. Gone are the days when you have zero tolerance on people who bring out the beast in you. You just unfollow or block them from your feed, and you're done.
- Savings is your best friend.
- You know how to cook a meal or two. And I'm not talking about frying eggs or boiling noodles.
- Finally, the satisfaction and comfort you feel knowing you share your frustrations with your age group. You're not afraid of opening up, and letting your problems out because you are not alone in this fight, and life gets better anyway.
Quarter life isn't that bad at all. Or do you want to wait for your 30th year to feel it? 😂
Luis and I were on our way for our first cruise trip when our McAllen to Dallas flight was moved to a later time. We arrived at the airport around 0530; our boarding time was 0600. I didn't try to amend because it's our fault that we were late. So we ended up discussing arguments that we are not supposed to have. I'm going to share these with you and may this be a lesson to couples out there planning their travels.Will avoid these next time!
Sometimes it all starts with this: "It's because you woke up late." And after a while you'll track everything you did, who did them first, who chewed their food last, who chose the departure time, and so on. The thing about being late is it messes up with your planning. If you're like me whose demands to stick to schedule are on the roof, better prepare everything ahead of time, including your partner's to-do list. This way, you'll be able to keep track both of your checklists and foresee delays.
We are guilty of this one. No matter how you list everything, something just slips your mind. In our case, it's the locks for our luggage. The stressful part is when you already mentioned about it and neither of you acts on it as soon as you remember. Small things like this pile up when you don't address it immediately. Stuff you might forget (but hopefully not): passport, valid IDs, tickets, keys, locks, hygiene essentials especially wipes, chargers, memory banks/storage, cash, cards, pen, gum. These are small yet essential things. Because who forget their OOTD and accessories for the whole trip?
3. Where to eat
He wants chicken. I want burgers. He chooses Popeyes. I insists going to TGIF. The thing about compromise is it has limits. And hunger is the one limiting it. Nobody, just nobody, can beat a gurgling tummy and tired feet. The solution that we came up with is to order food that we want and eat it in one place. And since we both want to be fair, we opted eating on a chair, with different meals, but together. We shared, too! It made us realize our differences in terms of preferences, and eating together makes the arguments go away. Compromise can be given by one or shared by two. We chose the latter.
Alternating in paying meals and other spends is our thing. Traveling makes it look too much and too frequent. If you don't have 'partnered savings' like us, it's just right to agree on how much to spend for the whole travel. Say 500 USD each for pocket money, you don't really need to keep track who's paying for what because at the end of the day, you paid equally. Maybe we'll consider what other couples do, like save before the trip. But we're used to saving separately, hmm who knows. Must be worth a try.
Luis isn't really fond of taking pictures in general while I take tons of photos when traveling or going someplace special. I already told him it's for collecting moments that we can reminisce when we get older, and he told me he's okay with that, but not frequent selfies. Since I don't really do selfies a lot, most of our travel photos are two of us sharing quiet times, goofing around, and some overrated couple shots with a tourist-y backdrop, or like our featured image here with a creative twist. It's a matter of agreement on this case. Whichever I like mostly, and I'm happy we had agreed on something. He's pretty supportive when it comes to doing something I passionately love. So there.
6. Last-minute stops
I usually am the more risk-taker type than him. Some days I'll just ask him to go to South Padre without any plans at all, and some days I succeed on forcing a getaway. However, there are times when he just won't easily give in especially if he's the one doing the long, long drive. In this scenario, we usually do the talk: weighing in pros and cons, expenses, tightness of the schedule.
7. Schedule changes
There are events you can't control: weather, delays in flights, cancellation of bookings, etc. But there are situations where one's sense of time and perception is the one getting in the way. Moods for example. "I'm not in the mood for" is usually not a good start of a sentence during the course of your adventure. I always tell Luis that once we go all in for a travel, our moods should be in sync with our activities. Sure there are days that Lazy song is your theme song, but you can always set it aside so you can live "in the moment."
8. Mood swings
I have my own share of mood swings while waiting to board, experiencing traffic, and the like. You see, I don't like to wait. I admit that even when I'm not on my period, my decisions are random, and sometimes very erratic. Luis already knows me and my knack for anger burst. I can blame it on my hormones and being a female but the feminists would refute my claims, so I'm just going to own it. I blame myself for having uncontrollable moods. Sometimes I go from to real quick and Luis would just stare at me, not knowing what to do, or trying to figure out whether I'm serious or not. I'll give him the trophy for being the most patient and understanding man on earth for this one! As for my adjustments, I try my best not to get mad as often as I usually do. May the heavens help me on this one.
9. Stress. 10. Another stress
Traveling can be a lot stressful than you think. Like most healthy couples, arguments will come at one point or another, unexpectedly, or in a whim. You can't even summarize it in one post, but if you have an end game in mind, everything will fall into place. Either you'll think about the stresses and let them eat you and your whole trip or just laugh at them and throw them at the sea, on the road, in the sky, wherever you'd want. After all, you decided to travel to have fun and forget your everyday worries. So, what's your end game? To argue then argue some more or to argue then resolve the issue as quickly as possible? Remember, communication is the key to every relationship. Your travel buddy might not be your special someone; it can be your best friend, sibling, or a one-time friend from strangers pool. However you throw and resolve your arguments, your travel experience will solely depend on how you handle yourself, with all the stresses in the world.