With 2017 well and truly behind us and 2018 going full steam ahead, I can’t help but wonder where my life is headed. I mean, did anyone else notice how fast January and February flew by? Now it’s March and in just two short months I’ll be turning 24.

So when I think back to when I was younger, all I ever dreamt about was being older. From my point of view, everything looked so fabulous. Everyone seemed to have their sh*t together. Now I’m here, both feet firmly planted in adulthood and I’ve never been more scared. I used to think that by this age I would be settled down, with a stable career behind me. While me and my husband ‘to-be’ plan our future and family together. What was I thinking?

I have to admit my goals, aspirations and general outlook on life has definitely changed over the years. I used to always want my fairy tale ending. Having had a taste of what the real world has to offer, I no longer want that. I mean sure maybe one day, just not anytime soon.

Truth be told, I don’t really know what I want anymore. Some days I think about going back to school and other times I think f*ck this, lets travel the world and be a nomad. However, for once in my life I can honestly say I am happy in my own skin and I’m not longing to find that special someone to complete me. I’m already complete, all on my lonesome. It’s taken time, tears and one too many tubs of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream to get me here but I wouldn’t change it for the world.

I feel like society tells us to turn right in life and most people do.

I on the other hand, missed the turning and have taken the nearest exit on my left. I’m a real life ‘Alice in Wonderland’ only my names not Alice and I don’t know what land I’m living in. I’m forever pretending I have it together, when in actual fact I don’t have a clue what I’m doing half the time!

For starters, the idea of making a phone call scares the crap out of me and I struggle to throw things away, even though I know deep down I don’t need them anymore. I never follow through on plans and God only knows where my keys are half the time. I don’t change my bedsheets or wash my hair when I know I should, because it’s just too much effort sometimes. I’m terrible at cleaning things when I’m done using them and I can’t iron for sh*t. I have a stack of books doing nothing but collecting dust and I never read instructions. Who am I? Legally I’m an adult, but most days I feel like a potato.

Let’s take a moment to remember the good old days…

When our biggest worry was how to analyse the characters in ‘Lord of the Flies’ or how to figure out the value of ‘x’ in some long equation, that still to this day, I’ve never used… Go Figure!As if we all thought we had it tough back then, those were the easy days in comparison to what the world has in store. Unfortunately, some of the issues we faced back then are still around in adulthood, only worse.

For example, self-esteem and body image never go away. In fact they only heightened when you realise you’re basically a ticking time bomb trying to find someone to love and love you in return. Otherwise you end up old and alone. Then there’s the individuals that go from being the classroom bully, the one who called you fat or ugly. Well now they’re your team leader at work being unfair because of your gender, race, religious background, the list goes on. Not forgetting the office bitch (every department has one, let’s be honest)that goes out of her way to make you feel uncomfortable, in almost every situation possible. Right down to making a complaint, because you forgot to say good morning to her yesterday, as she walked past your desk.

Being depressed as a teenager is no easier when you get older either…

After taking a few days off school to recover, everyone (including the teachers) are supportive and happy to see you back on track. As an adult, everyone is secretly judging you and playing Chinese whispers in the communal kitchen. Only for you to walk in and not find your mug, resulting in a mental breakdown. They told you that your GCSE’s and A Levels would be the end of it. Now you have deadlines to meet and appraisals to stay on top of. So the company can assess your capability and determine whether or not to give you that 1-2% pay rise or annual bonus, that you most definitely deserve. On top of this, nowadays you have social media, politics and all the other bullsh*t life throws at you to handle.

I’m sure everyone else is thinking the same, but It doesn’t feel like that.

From the outside looking in, everyone has it together and I’m just bobbing along in my own little bubble. This isn’t something new for me either, I’ve always been this way. In school my teacher reports would say the same thing every year, almost as if they were planned. They would go a little something like this… “Lauren is a bright and intelligent student with lots of potential, (basically what they’re trying to say is, I’m not an amazing grade A pupil but I’m also not the class reject). She does however have a tendency to chat too much and disrupt the class (guilty).” I’m not going to lie, I’m pretty proud of that. They do say consistency is key, well I’ve been mastering it from the age of three.

But now I’ve reached my plateau and I don’t want to continue bobbing along in life. I want to go on to greater things, make my mark in life. I’m not talking about a celeb status, just enough to make a small change in other people’s lives. I guess you could say that’s why I’ve started this blog. Writing has always been a passion of mine and something I’ve been told I’m good at. Sure, writing from the heart and referencing real life (my life)is slightly harder than I thought. But that doesn’t mean I’m going to give up on what I love doing. I have so much going on inside this head of mine not to share it with others. And maybe, just maybe it might help someone in need.

With that being said, I need to stop thinking I’ll be stuck in this situation forever.

Sometimes I feel like my heart will never heal or I’ll never get out of this impossible struggle. We need to stop confusing a season with a lifetime, even our trials have an expiry date. We will grow, life will change and everything will work itself out eventually. But for the time being let’s not dwell on what could be. It’s perfectly fine not to be okay with your current situation. That’s what life is all about. We need to have our downs, so we can work our way back to the top again. Lessons need to be learnt and mistakes must be made.

When I’m having a bad day I always think back to the time that idiot broke my heart, or a job was stressing me out. Sure, it felt like the end of the world, but look how far I have come since then. Look at what I have achieved and who I’ve proven wrong.I picked myself up, brushed myself down and waited for the dust to settle. A friend once told me “Muddy water is best cleared by leaving it alone”and I cannot stress this enough! At the end of the day life goes on and the world keeps spinning, so embrace all that is you. Stand with your head held high and repeat after me ‘I did not wake up to be mediocre’. Say it loud and say it proud, say it every day if you have to. I do. We may not see it now but we all have our calling in life and when you know, you know. So, let’s not give up hope just yet.

It's Okay Not To Be Okay