"a caterpillar doesn't just grow into a butterfly. a caterpillar must undergo metamorphosis, and a cocoon is where a caterpillar risks it all: enters total chaos, undergoes total rebuilding, and is born to a new way of living. only in taking the risk of entering that inert cocoon can the caterpillar go from dormancy to potency, from ugliness to beauty."

Sunday, July 01, 2007

"25-ness"

"Come forth into the light of things,
Let nature be your teacher."

-- William Wordsworth

2007 -- yes, this year -- is the year when 1982 babies like me turn 25. while i am still a lot of months away from officially embracing my own "25-ness," i can't help but, at this early, share some thoughts that have to do with the quarter year mark. admit it, turning 25 is a time for contemplation.

when i was young, i thought i'd never get to live past the age of 18. i also thought then that those in their 20's were so mature and responsible already. it was difficult to see myself growing into something like them.

the truth is, even at this stage of my life, i think i'll never grow into something like them. i feel like i'm an outsider to my own age group.

while i'm aware that i'm expected to carry out certain responsibilities and behave accordingly, i don't see myself doing things like the rest of the throng does.

i'm wary of following the most convenient, prestigious, "safe", expected, or already laid out path. i have no wish to be led straight to boredom.

i don't want to live a life mostly spent on work and routine, i don't want to be a slave of the world, i don't want to be tied to seemingly important but are in fact inconsequential things and, in the process, put to waste my blessings and forget what it's like to live free-spiritedly.

while i'm willing to let go of my childish tendencies, i cannot see myself giving up my child-like qualities. i want to run around, pursue thrills, feel the wind blowing on my hair, keep being inspired, be forever curious about the things around me, enjoy skipping and hopping, among other things.

i want my life to really count, too, which is why i'm trying to zero-in on the ONE thing i'm meant to do. i maybe enjoying a state of placidness right now -- no biggie responsibilities, no biggie duties, no biggie worries, no energy-zappers -- but i'm also using up this time to think clearly about THE options. it is an apt time to be thinking about such things.

out of the unique paths i can make, i know there's ONE thing out there that i'd like to do and that it's the ONE thing i'm meant to do. BUT i still have to figure out what it is.

no doubt, i have questions -- too many of them -- but i'm not about to stress myself just so i could get the answers right here, right now. i believe rilke put it well when he wrote, "Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer."

yes. there's no rush. nowhere is it said to waste life by being complacent either. the important thing is to LIVE and, by so doing, find THE answer.

turning 25 is a time for contemplation. it is also a time for celebration.


p.s. two of my closest friends (cinema buddy and travel buddy) are turning 25 this month and i feel like i'm turning 25 with them -- mainly because, like me, they're too young to be 25. ;-)


21 comments:

  1. I love how you write. You keep your sincerity and you are far from seasoned. In a good way :]

    I’m almost 19 and I can relate to most of this. I’ve always had my life planned out for me since I was in kindergarten and now that I’m on my own, responsible for myself, etc, it’s truly amazing this thing called life.

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  2. I’m with you. As another near 25-er (not until September), its definitely a thought-provocative time. Myself, and friends of mine, are insistent on having some quarter-life crisis, but only because we’re officially allowed to. And leave behind child-ish qualities? Forget it, we’re all 17 (hopefully) until we die. Happy 25th at some point soon.

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  3. Cool post. I could remember back when I was 25 that I felt I should have gone further in my career than I had at that point. But I absolutely agree that regarding the question of life, the best answer is to “live your way into the answer.” Advanced happy 25th birthday!

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  4. Yup. Just turned 25 myself. I certainly don’t feel as old as I think I should be (did that make sense?)

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  5. My co works and I were discussing this recently. The older of the four of us mentioned this book, quarter life crisis that helped her a little.
    http://www.amazon.com/Quarterlife-Crisis-Unique-Challenges-Twenties/dp/1585421065

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  6. thats a cool blog!! … the pains and pleasures..of growin’ up… but u already have… i suppose so…

    cheerio
    sauvik

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  7. I turned 25 lat Feb, and i can relate to everything you have written here. Amazing post. Though i never thought that much about being a 25, but it’s good to see and observe something happening to you on this planet.

    Advanced happy 25th birthday!

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  8. I turn 25 myself later this year and I guess it is time to reflect. Personally, I don’t have any feelings towards my career or where I am in life except that “I’m in a good place”. Great post. (#):)

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  9. I remember my 25th year. At first, it looked like a big challenge, too many questions, lots of things to do, lots of energy for my driven child-like behavior and also the opportunity for doing something that would make a difference.
    But then, in my birthday, my exgirlfriend’s mother ask me something: “how does it feel to have 5 years left to 30?” I hate it at first (not her, she is a lovely intelligent and amazing woman, shame that i don’t see her anymore). It hit me to realize that i was growing up, responsibilities were to come and specially i had live without a plan.
    Now i’m 35 and i still think of that question every Jan-15, but this year had a different word: “how does it feel to have lived the half of your life?” I don’t regret it, I’m happy about it. But still i would never let go of my child like behavior, and most important, i know, that there’s so much things left that i want to do that sure i will never be bore in my life.
    Life is great… Happy advanced BD, and be prepared for the best is yet to come….

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  10. Lol, I agree on that! I’d thought being a 20-something meant I’d be a lot more adult. It seems i’m degenerating and enjoying my childhood right now doing crazy and silly things. But I so enjoy that view on life rather than through boring and dead adult eyes.

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  11. Haha, you are not alone. Somehow I have always wanted to be stuck at 21, and right now, I feel like 25 is some foreign land. Im excited to get there, but not quite so. (3 months more!)

    I wish you the best in your journey (naks!), and happy birthday to your buddies! Magpakasaya tayo, hehe. Happy birthday to all the dogs (yehey 1982!) out there, too!

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  12. growing means knowing what life has to offer. embrace what is there and dream of what is not.

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  13. I got lead here from wordpress’ blog of the minute link. Nice post!

    I crossed the quarter-century mark in March this year. It’s tempting to want to compare myself with others of my age, and become pressured to conform to a certain life-plans and models of success. The growing expectation to “have” some things or “be someone” continue to weigh on my peers and myself. Coupled with it is the sense of “being left behind” when we hear of friends and acquaintances progressing in the some expected way. I suspect this is a familiar sentiment.

    On the other hand, however, I’ve taken more ownership of my life, and only began to take advantage of the expanded possibilities that growing into one’s mid-twenties have to offer. I’ve become more insistent of what I want, and not settle for the convenient or the comfortable. I don’t want to live with regrets. I even feel that I can better relate to folks several years younger than some friends my age (is this neoteny or what?).

    Anyways, just to quote what someone wrote on my birthday card: “Life begins at 25!”

    Happy Birthday!

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  14. enjoy the path you want to take. take care always.

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  15. when i was 25, i felt like i was in some crisscrossroads. I resigned from the company I worked for almost six years. There was no clear reason for the resignation. I just said I wanted some time for soul seaching. No one really understood my decision, including my close friends and parents. I went to Dumaguete for 3 weeks, in a friend's house.

    Then I returned to Cebu with a refreshed feeling, but not knowing what was in store for me. I was immediately accepted for a managerial job. Big break! Just some of life's surprises.

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  16. Happy birthday na lang. You are an adventurous person that’s why you travel a lot. You don’t want to be confined; you want to soar high. So, follow your dreams and here’s hoping that when you turn 40 and you look back, you can say to yourself that you did the right thing. All the best, Caterpillar.

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  17. 25 is a very crucial age to an individual, it is one point in life
    where many important decisions are made—like love and marriage, career paths and ambitions.
    I hope this would be fruitful for you in this manner. I like how you said it, never to be a slave to the world
    But to be a free spirit.

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  18. i turned 25 last May 21st. i thought my life would then become stable at that age, but now i'm still searching for the answers to embrace me. they say you can get it if you really want but the more i struggle to fight all the challenges, the more chances of getting to the finish line become blurry. but i got no reason to give up.. got to live this life...

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  19. happy birthday jr3! the number of deep and interesting comments in this entry show that a lot of people care about you (those who are already 25+) and a lot of people look up to you (those who are 25-).

    in the next phase of your life, contemplate deeper. celebrate merrier. travel farther. dream bigger.

    just live.

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  20. turning old numerically is not really a choice, but remaining young in spirit is always an option. :)

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