I absolutely loved Lena Dunham’s book Not That Kind of Girl. If you haven’t read it, you definitely should. It’s honest, refreshing, and brought a lot of things into focus for me. For example: lately I’ve been feeling a dull sense of anxiety and restlessness and I couldn’t really figure out why. Beyond normal work and adult life stress, I have no reason to feel tense. Then I read a line in Lena’s book about feeling nostalgic for a period of time that you’re still in and it all clicked. I’m nostalgic for the period of time I’m in right now and it’s a lot to wrap my mind around. I’m aware that things will be changing in the next few years, and I’m still not totally sure how I feel about that.
Right now all of my closest friends are still single, as in not married (though some are in relationships) and none of us have kids. On the weekends we know that we’re going to go out together and will probably be doing something together during the day too. If I’m bored during the week, I can easily call someone and have them meet me at the mall/the gym/for dinner. Friendships are really important and we spend a lot of time together. I love it. But I’ve also seen a few friends get into really serious relationships recently and sort of disappear. These relationships feel different from when we were dating people in college or high school. Now there’s a good chance that these couples will move in together and get married. And while that doesn’t mean that they should stop having friends (that’s a topic for another blog post), a shift in priorities becomes more acceptable and normal as they prepare to build a life with this person.
I think, both consciously and subconsciously, I’m sensing that we’re coming to the end of the time period where you spend all of your time with your friends going out, shopping, and worrying about yourself and that’s it. As that era winds down, we’ll start entering the phase where people move in with significant others, get married, and have kids. It’ll be less and less normal to have a girls’ night dinner in the middle of the week and 2 a.m. nights on a Saturday and more normal to have to pencil in get-togethers in advance because you’re balancing marriages and kids and such. I know that this isn’t all about to happen right this second, but it’s not far down the road. And considering I still feel like I’m 16 years old sometimes, it’s kind of blowing my mind. I love this time period and don’t want it to end, even though I’m excited for the next phase too (though I’m not quite ready for it yet). To quote the great philosopher Ron Burgundy “I’m in a glass case of emotion” about the whole thing.
So while I still don’t want to grow up quite yet, reading this book was helpful in that it helped me to pinpoint why I’ve been waking up grinding my teeth lately. Getting old is kind of scary, and both waking Lauren and dream Lauren realize it. And maybe that’s okay.
Do you ever feel nostalgic for a period of time you’re in right now? Do you feel the way I do as you move through your twenties?