# 21 (2014) Birthdays, Bucketlists and Milestones
The problem with birthdays as you get older is that they become less of a celebration and more of a milestone achievement gauge.
When you hit 21 and complain of being ‘old’ you’re not looking back and thinking ‘What the fuck happened to my life?’ At 21 you’ve got permission to not have achieved anything because you’re expected to have towed the university line and still be discovering what you want from life.
30 is still a bit hazy but as the generations take longer and longer to become independent it’s becoming more acceptable for thirtysomethings to still be trying to make their mark. When you hit 40, if you haven’t yet ticked your major boxes, it’s a scary reminder of the things you may never realise.
You can’t tell people in their twenties not to fritter away their youth. It’s an unfathomable quantity. The world is still your oyster. You just need to get up off your backside and go get it. But when you’re there you’ll be wondering where the years went. It’s almost inevitable.
And even though I have achieved both my major life aims in a way – to be running my own business and have published a book – I still don’t feel victorious in their wake.
If you have aspirations you’re always chasing the dream. If you have a business you’re always striving to make it better, bigger, more profitable.
I wonder if I will ever reach a milestone feeling satisfied that I am in the place I thought I would be by that age. I am beginning to wonder.