18 and getting an A* vs. 21 and getting a 2:1

A long rambling post…hope you enjoy!

If you know me you’ll know how nostalgic I can get and how much I love to re-visit those old memories that put a little smile on your face. And that got me thinking. Being in my final semester of my final year at university made me look back on how much has changed over the past 3-4 years. A lot has changed during the transition from a bright eyed, naive 18 year old, finishing her A-levels and preparing to move away from home, up to the present, as a 21 year old (dare I day) young woman. It’s the end of an era. Yes it’s sad, but it’s also exciting and full of potential. I recently saw somebody mention how much your priorities and outlook on life change and it seemed a nice idea to juxtapose them with the outlook on my own life at present.

*18 and getting an A* vs. 21 and getting a 2:1*.

When I was 18, some of the most important things in the world to me were Thursday nights. I don’t know why we did it on Thursday nights, but that was the night to go out to town, get pissed on Jägerbombs in Baa Bar, dance in a horribly grotty club and go to school the next day either still drunk or with a horrendous hangover. ‘Hangover Fridays’ in the common room is what it was. That was life, every week and if we could face it, going out again on the Saturday to the more edgy club in town for overpriced drinks and an unusual juxtaposition of indie and house/dubstep/anything slightly leftfield or ‘alternative’ (as people used to call it). We would work all week long in our part time supermarket jobs where we would share common experiences of shelf stacking and calling in ‘sick’ to work when the hangover was too much. What’s even better, we were still in education, so all of the £6.30 per hour was UN TAXED! More to spend on double voddys and Red Bull! Woohoo!

We were independent 21st century young adults-living at home, reliant on our parents for food, a place to live an emotional support. Yeah, real independent.

The biggest thing that pressed on our minds was our impending leaving school and move on to university. How would we cope living without mum or dad? Would we be able to keep up with the workload? WOULD WE MAKE ANY FRIENDS?! None of this would be possible, however, without getting the A-level grades we needed. AAA for me to get onto English Literature at Uni of Sheffield. A lot to ask when there’s not much else really going on in your life. What does matter to an 18 year old?

Rebelling against your parents…mine were pretty relaxed but I still liked to think I was some crazy cool bad-ass. Staying out all night, drinking cider on 10 acre, breaking into tennis clubhouses, trying to hide your red eyes from your parents thi list goes on. Precious nostalgic memories! Oh and OF COURSE, boys! Worrying that nobody will ever want to go out with you, trying to act cool around the one you fancied, wearing loads of makeup because that’s what everyone else did….and those girly sleepovers where you would discuss eachother’s ‘encounters’ with boys and tell one another the ins and outs of everything. Pretty much sums up teenage life. I mix of excitement, confusion and awkwardness. But I loved it and I don’t doubt you did either!

So. Coming back to the present, when I look at some of the things I actually cared about loads, I can see how much I’ve changed, due to age and experiences. Being 21, I’ve learnt to embrace who I am. Yeah, I’m not the loudest person in a group. And I’m ok with that. I’m a bit eccentric and weird, but totally okay with that. I still moan to my friends that I don’t have a boyfriend even now, but I definitely think I’m romanticising the idea of having a BF. #singleandluvinit. Because at 21, I’m still really young!! Just because I (almost) have a degree, does not mean my life has to be set out in stone already. There’s a still load of time to explore and enjoy my youth. I AM going to miss student life though, so I’m going to make a pact with myself to prioritize the remainder of my time here in order for me to still have a few more crazy nights and just live whilst I still have minimal responsibilities!!

Hope the idea I was trying to put across is easy enough to find. Your priorities and worries when you were 18 were like the biggest concern in your life back then. Back then. And what seems like a million years ago was actually only 3 YEARS AGO! Not even that long-; a fraction of your life as a whole and think how much has changed.  It would be nice to look back; say when I’m 25 to see what I class my life concerns and where I am as a person, because I can bet a LOT of things will have changed. The future is exciting and I can’t wait for it to happen, but for now, I’mma just enjoy the present!!




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