I'm 27 and I Have a Bunk Bed
I’m five months away from my high school reunion.
It’s time for me to impress all the men who didn’t date me, the girls who picked on me, and even the people I called my friends. Except here’s the thing. I don’t have a fancy job or any kids. In fact, I’m twenty-seven, single, jobless, and I have a bunk bed. That’s right, a freaking bunk bed.
And quite frankly, I’m pretty unapologetic about it. Because in the words of Bono, “You don’t owe anyone any explanations.” I’m gonna add to that and say, you also don’t owe anyone any apologies for where you’re at in life. We feel a lot of pressure to have everything figured out by now. Like by thirty our lives should have totally fallen into place already.
But they didn’t.
And thats ok.
Life is gonna be like that for some of us.
I made choices to get to where I am. I decided to move to New York City to pursue my passions for writing and public-speaking. Living in New York means that I can order Korean food at 3am. Unfortunately, it’s also expensive. Hence the bunk bed. But I’m okay with it because it means I get to dedicate my life to trying to launch a career by doing things I love. And a lot of times, that doesn’t mean instant success and glamour.
No matter what anyone says, I refuse to feel like I’m the ten-year reunion loser.
I refuse to feel bad or embarrassed about where I’m at. Because all of these things are temporary. They don’t define me or the kind of person am. They don’t define my future success. These are things that can and will change.
What isn’t temporary is the fact that I’m the kind of friend who shows up when she says she will. The kind of friend who brings flowers on the first day of your birthday week. The friend who helps you move and brings beer. I’ll answer at my phone at 4am and talk you off the ledge.
I’m proud of this.
I’m also a good daughter and a compassionate person. I’m proud that I have the courage to pursue an unstable career that doesn’t immediately come with a 401k and awesome benefits. That despite this, I still work hard every, single day because I believe that my efforts will come to fruition. So I refuse to apologize for not having a fancy desk and a large salary. I refuse to apologize for passing on the expensive dinner outings or for shopping at Target instead of Coach
And being single doesn’t mean that I’m unlovable or selfish. It doesn’t mean that I’ve somehow managed to mess up all of the potential relationships in my life. It simply means that I haven’t found the right person yet. Nothing more. Nothing less. I believe I’ll find him when the universe is ready for me to find him, and if that means I’m attending my high school reunion alone, that’s ok.
So yes, I am going to attend my high school reunion. And yes, I’m going to sincerely congratulate all of the people who love their jobs and who found their soul mates. I’m going to oogle over the pictures of their kids and feel genuine happiness for them.
But I’m not going to compare myself. And I’m not going to feel bad that I’m not in the same place. Instead, I’m going to mingle and smile confidently. I’m going to genuinely laugh and find joy in reuniting with people I haven’t seen a long time. “Life takes patience,” my friend told me the other day. I’m following that advice and I’m trying to do it with happiness and optimism. Because at the end of the day, I believe I’m going to be ok.
Until then, I refuse to apologize.