I’ve been hearing my older girlfriends say that everything becomes weird once you turn 25. Some of them say that you start experiencing changes in your body and mindset – suddenly a lot of my friends are complaining about back pain, a slower metabolism, not being able to establish a stable relationship, and feeling trapped in their careers!
I used to just laugh it all off, thinking that those things won’t happen to me. But now that I’m 25, I’ve realized that things do get weird at this age. For instance, I’ve been seeing the following changes:
1. Sudden and drastic weight gain
Now, I’m not sure if this one is entirely because of my age or because of the toxic lifestyle in Metro Manila, but I swear, I literally felt like I gained 5 kg of body fat the moment I turned 25.
Just a short background: I’ve always been skinny. My mom’s major complaint while I was growing up was that I could eat all the food in the world and still be underweight. And even if I did gain weight, it was so easy for me to shed the unwanted pounds and keep my small stature.
But when I turned 25, my weight literally skyrocketed to an all-time high and I just kept growing larger by the day despite all my efforts to lose weight1. It’s really frustrating and it’s affecting my self-esteem. Recently, I’ve been avoiding having my photos taken, and have been turning down meetups with friends because I don’t want people to see me in this state. Body positivity? No thanks, I’m definitely not feeling positive about my own body. I look and feel terrible.
I hear so many people say that weight gain is a natural part of aging. I’ve already heard millions of reasons why. And while it must be true to a certain extent, it’s still something I refuse to accept. But at the same time, I’m worried that my body will never go back to the way it was… what then?
2. My tolerance for alcohol is lower
Drinks are always present whenever my cousins and I get together. No homecoming or reunion is complete without a bottle of liquor (or two!). There are even times when drinking is the only thing2 we would do all day, every day.
My cousins are pretty strong drinkers, so we usually drink until we all drop. I used to be able to keep up with them but recently, I’ve noticed that my tolerance just isn’t the same as before. For instance, I used to be able to drink several shots of vodka and still feel alright through the night. But now, drinking that same amount feels like I downed two whole bottles of hard liquor all by myself. The worst part of it all is that hangovers are now a regular thing, and they now last so much longer than they used to.
3. As a result of #2, drinking and nights out don’t excite me anymore
But besides not being able to tolerate alcohol in my system, in general I just feel like I have less energy to go out for dinner or a drink, especially if it’s on a weekday night. Even the thought of going to karaoke (something I LOVE doing) in the middle of the week exhausts me.
I’m also starting to dread having to hang out in a noisy bar or nightclub with younger folks… you know, the ones who go wild and puke all over the place.
4. I now find enjoyment in the strangest activities
My teenage/early 20s self would never, ever volunteer to tidy up the bedroom or do the laundry. Getting excited over an appliance store’s sale is also unheard of.
But now, I think that doing the laundry is the most relaxing activity ever. Tidying up my bedroom is my favorite thing to do during the weekends (besides sleeping, of course). I go to the mall not to check out clothes; instead, I look at home appliances, furniture, and cookware. Oh, and home TV shopping? Love it. I go crazy over the cleaning tools and kitchen knives that they’re selling.
Heck, I even find cooking enjoyable, even though my dishes are close to inedible!
5. I suddenly want to settle down and have kids
I’ve always known that I want to settle down and have kids someday, but lately I’ve been finding myself getting more concerned about it. Like, a lot of my financial and career decisions are now for planning for the future, as opposed to shorter-term purchases and luxuries.
And kids, oh kids… I used to be super awkward around them but I now love being with them. Looking at baby photos and videos instantly brightens up my day. Oh, and sometimes I just find myself researching baby supplies prices, tuition fees for the best schools in the city… and reading articles on how to raise multilingual kids XD
I still consider myself young but these changes are showing me that I *am* getting older. To be honest, many of these changes took me by surprise, so I do acknowledge that embracing all these changes is going to be difficult. These changes are part of the reason why I’m trying to be more mindful of the things I do and getting rid of the factors that don’t help or enrich me. I can’t stop myself from growing older, but that doesn’t mean I can’t adapt and strive to be a better version of myself.
All of this is pretty overwhelming though, so I’m going to deal with these changes one step at a time for now.