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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Queen's U chapter.

I have always been absolutely petrified of growing up, and I certainly know I’m not alone in this. The only way I’ve made peace with the fact that I am indeed growing up is by coming to the realization that growing up is a facade.

Adulthood seems like something very tangible in your teens. Although full independence is not yet yours, and you are kindly reminded of this all the time thanks to your curfew and other parameters, you still feel like you can see it around the corner. Like a looming entity, adulthood feels near.

Yet when your teen years start to fade and you enter your twenties, the thought that you are anything short of a child seems laughable, and you start to realize how much about the world you truly don’t know.

I think part of your 20s is marked by this realization that you know absolutely nothing, or at least a whole lot less than you thought. I see myself as so much less of a ‘grown-up’ than I did a few years ago—and not because I’ve taken strides backward. More so, I feel as though I can see the full picture now. I can understand just how much life I’ve got ahead of me, and just how little life I’ve got under my belt. This perspective is vastly different from that of the teenage version of myself who thought she had it all figured out.

So, to recap: I’ve realized I’m still young and have no idea where my life will take me (as does everyone else my age at some point). Now what?

The “now what” is entirely different for everyone. Some people come out of the womb knowing exactly what they want to do and exactly how they are going to do it. Some people will chase their passions — trying to make it big as a musician or going off to culinary school to someday run their own restaurant. Some are in school trying to get their degree and get out. Some can’t afford school and have been working to make ends meet. And some are simply confused. Yet what is unanimous for all of these 20-something-year-olds is that nothing is set in stone.

Your 20s are for figuring out who you want to be and what you are going to do to get you there. Your 20s are for being comfortable pivoting.

In your 20s, it’s entirely acceptable to find yourself in a job you absolutely hate, only to quit and explore a new path. It’s a time to change your major, lose friends who no longer align with your journey, make new friends who inspire and support your growth, have an existential crisis about the meaning of life, and then wake up the next day to do it all again.

It is very easy to get caught up in how fast life is moving, yet there is so much value in taking a minute to realize that life isn’t moving all that fast after all. I can assure you that any 30-year-old you encounter will tell you that you are indeed still a baby — and that you don’t have to have it all figured out. So, take a breath, and I promise you will get exactly where you need to be.

Leah Pearl

Queen's U '24

Leah is a third year student at Queens U majoring in Religious Studies.