Things You Can Do At 21 That You Cannot Do At 26
Updated: Apr 2
Actual photo of me on my 21st birthday
Who would have thought there would be such a difference? At 21, I was practically a superhero compared to how I feel now if I go one day without drinking enough water and taking an allergy pill.
Recently, I went on a weekend trip that involved a brewery tour, and some light barhopping/diner food intake that made me feel like someone had unzipped me from the forehead down, and was forcing me inside out during the following days. But I am still young! I said, clutching my spiked seltzer water. Turns out, not as young as I once was.
Things you can do at 21 that you cannot do at 26:
1. Bar hop and eat greasy food without feeling like roadkill for two days after.
2. Enjoy Flaming Hot Cheetos with zero consequences.
3. Stay up until 11:30pm without saying something lame like, "Woo, this is past my bedtime!"
4. Drink super sweet $5 Moscato wine by the bottle without feeling like someone is taking an electric screwdriver to your head and stomach.
5. Go days without moisturizing. I currently feel like a shriveled sock if I go 24 hours without putting lotion on my face.
6. Survive on mac n' cheese and hot dogs. Seriously - how did I get through college? If I go too long without a carrot now, my gastrointestinal system starts to shut down.
7. Do normal things without being SORE after. Example: If I carry a grocery bag that is too heavy, my arm hurts the next day.
8. Go to a bar or a late movie on a week day. Now, my friends and I spend at least three weeks trying to coordinate a good time to get happy hour - so then we can respectfully all leave around 7:00pm, change into pajamas and watch re-runs of The Great British Bake Off until it's time to crawl into bed.
9. Wait to go OUT until 10:00pm. At 21, everyone got ready together, then there was the sacred concept of the ~pregame, then you actually went to the bar or club at 10:00pm to start your night. Now, if asked to get drinks, everyone is like "Is 6 o'clock good? We can split some appetizers and get home before it starts to get dark? Okay great!"
10. Not be affected by Daylight Saving Time at all. For three weeks after, I am yawning all day like "What time is it? Hmm, FEELS LATER". My friends with kids struggle to keep them on a reasonable sleep schedule, and for some reason, I have more clocks than ever before that I need to change.
Despite all of this, I know that I am still very young. And aspire to keep up with my mother who was an 80's queen with giant hair and somewhere to be every night. For me - that somewhere is on my couch with some tea watching Jeopardy.