I'm Young. I'm Old.
I was at a bar the other night and a friend of mine said "I was thinking about it the other day, and I would never do my twenties over again." And I said that I could understand that, being as my first years out of college have been filled with terror and uncertainty and just looking at the rest of my life in front of me and having no idea what the hell is going to happen. And then the bartender asked me for my ID and I said to my friend that I hadn't been asked for that since I cut my hair and she said she had a hard time believing that since I looked so young. And then the bartender asked for her ID, too, and I said "see? He asks everyone for ID. It's not because I look young. (pause) Wait. I didn't mean that the way it sounded."
Work feels like high school again. This morning, I woke up and couldn't get out of bed. I came into work late. In high school, I was almost never at my first class on time. When I actually got to work, I felt unmotivated and angry and like no one understood me and all I wanted to do was go home. And then I remembered a time in geometry class when our teacher was talking about how to figure out all the angles of a triangle just by knowing the complementary angle of a square next to the triangle or whatever and before I slipped into the wonderful world of sleep, I stared at a yellowjacket circling the teacher's head and just hoped that it would sting him so that something exciting would happen and also because he took twelve points off my last test because I missed, like, one step of work in one of the problems. I came home from work and fell asleep almost immediately, without having dinner or doing my laundry and only waking up sometime after midnight when Evil Roommate came home from work and turned my light off for me. He's sweet sometimes, but he's also loud and his fumbling around my desk woke me up. In school, I used to come home every day and fall asleep on the couch until my mom called me for dinner. Lately I've been listening to the same songs that I used to listen to in high school, thanks to MusicMatch Jukebox, which gives me a free hour of artist match radio every day. By the way does anyone else find that no matter what band they submit, MusicMatch ALWAYS matches it with some band called "!!! (Chk Chk Chk)?" And that no matter what song they play by !!! (Chk Chk Chk), that the first ten seconds sound exactly the same, but the first ten seconds is all you hear before you find the "skip" icon and click it? Shut up, !!! (Chk Chk Chk). If I wanted to hear a band that thinks it's Ethiopian, I'd drive down to the Little Ethiopia section of Los Angeles, wouldn't I? Little Ethiopia is famed for its reportedly delicious Ethiopian restaurants. That's ironic, when you think about it.
But I digress. I hated high school. Why do I feel like I'm repeating it? And at the same time, I've never felt so damn old. I joined a municipal soccer team a few weeks ago because I used to love soccer when I was a kid and I figured it would be a fun way to stay in shape. What I didn't realize was that to stay IN shape, one must currently BE in shape. And I'm not. The week after the first practice, I have never felt so sore except for maybe the time Evil Roommate took me on a three-hour horseback ride and didn't tell me why I may want to wear a sportsbra. I don't remember being this sore and this tired after soccer games or practice when I was a kid. In fact, I wasn't ever sore or tired. I ran around for a solid hour then. I can't even do twenty minutes right now. What the hell happened? My body aged ten years. Oh, and I grew boobs. Those things do tend to make movement more difficult.
My back hurts. You know who else's backs hurt? Old people's, that's who. Everyone at work complains that I keep the room temperature too low, but sometimes I have hot flashes so I like the keep the room cooler. Hot flashes? I'm going through menopause. It won't be long before the osteoporosis sets in and I get a humpback and I start wearing half-stockings that are always bunched around my ankles.
My grandma has a poster on her hobby room wall. There's a girl sitting on some steps and she's wearing a backpack. You don't see the girl's face. For a long time, I thought the poster was a picture of my mother when she was the same age I am now. They had the same hairstyle. At the top corner of the poster is says "I don't know where I'm going, but I'm about to find out." That used to seem so cool to me. It's terrifying now. Actually, now that I think about it, the girl had a little kitten poking out of her backpack, and it was the kitten who was saying s/he didn't know where s/he was going. That means that I was once inspired by an Inspirational Cat Poster. Dude, I hate those.