Let’s get mathematical. Or: I am now 26 years old and kind of freaking out.

So. Here’s a grand reflection about life and math. About measuring your life …in fiction. More specifically, fictional characters. This is something that my sisters and I have always jokingly done. 11 years old? Your Hogwarts letter should be arriving soon! 16? CHOOSE YOUR FACTION! Just turned 18? Congrats! No more putting your name in the lottery for The Hunger Games! 21: Winner winner, chicken dinner, time to go play blackjack with Jim Sturgess in Vegas. And so on. (Don’t even get me started on the von Trapp kids. That one kept us all going for years and I was super sad when I turned 17 because never again could some dude named Rolf serenade me before BETRAYING MY AUSTRIAN-LOVING FAMILY.) Anyway.

The older I get, the more ANXIOUS I get (naturally) because there aren’t as many milestones for fictional characters, nor are there many more fictional characters with significant ages. Not very often do you read or hear the lines, “And on the eve of your 33rd birthday, your birthright will be revealed and your epic quest will begin!” Not that I’m about to turn 33 (oh gosh, please no, not yet), but time is ticking away and soon enough I will be. And who will I compare myself to? Lady Mary Crawley? Esme Cullen? One of those Desperate Housewives? (haha, no thanks!) THE OLDER VERSION OF ROSE FROM TITANIC? *hyperventilates into a paper bag*

So where are all of these seemingly manic thoughts coming from and where are they going? Well, yesterday I turned 26 (yikes). I trampled through my brain trying to think of a fictional character who is this age and what sort of awesome or amusing connection I could match my life with. I actually did end up coming up with one. Weirdly, it’s the protagonist from a series by one of my favourite authors: Eugenie Markham from Richelle Mead’s Dark Swan books. Unless I find out that I am actually the daughter of the Storm King in the next year, however, I don’t really know how I feel about that connection. I don’t even know if I want to think about how I feel because I don’t do well with the fae (no matter how charming) or douchebag foxes. (Still totally love the series, though!)

And so, for the sake of fun times (and to ease my mind), I’ve decided to write my life in fictional story synopsis form. Yeah, it’s true that I’m not currently in the midst of some ultra interesting life journey at the moment, so I’ll definitely have to over-dramatize. I do that on a normal basis, though, so I think it’s all good.

So we talked all night about the rest of our lives, where we’re gonna be when we turn twenty-five…”

Throughout high school, Lindsey could never get the first line from that Vitamin C graduation song out of her head. Where would she be at 25? It seemed like such a monumental age; the quarter of a century, the silver year, the epitome of adult life. Maybe she would be married. Maybe she would be living in her own apartment with a golden retriever named Chace. Maybe she’d be living in France. Maybe she’d even have learned how to swim by then. Dreams would come and go, but one would always be definite. She would be a published writer–that was always the goal, and it had been ever since she declared it so in a fourth grade project about The Future.

Now, at 26, Lindsey still has no idea where her life is headed, and she’s had more than her share of quarter-life crises. She may still live and breathe words, but her job–her actual day job–requires donning a lab coat whilst fussing over medical supplies more than it does all-nighter writing sessions spent brainstorming tension-filled metaphors. Needless to say, it’s not exactly the future her younger self envisioned.

But then–

THEN WHAT? Well, that’s the thing. I don’t know what happens next. Dun dun dunnn. But really, the pool of fictional characters is diminishing in size. Time is flyyying. And I think that’s the point of this post. To point out how WEIRD time is. And that I am getting old.



5 Comments on “Let’s get mathematical. Or: I am now 26 years old and kind of freaking out.”

  1. Linda says:

    Lindsey, you are such a good writer, as evidenced by this effortlessly clever piece, so I have no doubt you’ll achieve your dream of being a published writer, but you know what I’m going to say about the rest: read outside the YA genre! There are plenty of fictional characters older than 26, TRUST ME.

    • Lindsey says:

      HAHAHA, I DO READ OUTSIDE THE GENRE. Just sparingly. I read The Art of Fielding, remember?! But yes, I am trying to do so more. I should. And I know there are also plenty of television and movie characters who are well above the age of 26, so I’m not in complete panic-mode yet.

      And thank you 🙂

  2. HELLO. I apparently never commented on this even though I read it, but we are going to MAKE IT someday. I often feel the same way though. BUT THEN I REMEMBER CHARMED (and yeah, okay, that’s TV but still) because they are adults when they get their POWERS.

    And I guess the metaphor here is that we will be too.

    • Lindsey says:

      TV shows totally still count. And I never watched Charmed, but ooooh they get powers when they’re adults? SWEET. WE STILL HAVE A CHANCE~


  3. […] that? I know that I can’t and shouldn’t really compare myself to a fictional character (which again is something I have the tendency to do), but as I clock off another year and reflect on my life, it’s hard not to evaluate what I […]

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