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    this is for them 20-somethings

    “You’re twenty. Oh if I had twenty back, what a mess I’d make.
    Twenty is for you.
    Twenty is for growth. 
    Twenty is for the pursuit of a tomorrow that is better than today.
    Twenty is for options.  
    Twenty is for passion. 
     … and knowledge.
     … and enjoyment.
    It is not for continuous compromise. It is not a time to say, ‘This is the guy I gotta make it with because this is the guy that I have. No matter what compromises, no matter what he does, I have to put up with it because he’s my man.’
    Twenty is for firing dudes when they don’t act right. 
    Twenty is for figuring out what you like in certain men and for figuring what different kind of men are out there – which ones you wanna keep and which ones you wanna discard. 
    It’s not for picking up other people’s clothes. It’s not for sticking it out when you’re not enjoying it anymore. 
    Twenty is an opportunity to move onward, upward, forward. 
    Get a large life so even if a dude doesn’t end up in it you still enjoy it. 
    Twenty is for creating all of that potential and not just compromising your way into the corner of a closet somewhere and then wondering what the heck happened. 
    You don’t have any children. You’re beautiful. You’re working. You’re working at a gas station – ain’t nothing wrong with it. But at your time off, don’t be looking to spend time with him, go look and spend time with some books and your brain to get a new degree so that you can put the gas station in your rear view mirror as you step forward into some kind of existence that won’t include him.”

    2017. A year I never thought would come. I spent most of my life waiting for 2012 because that was when I would go to college and finally be grown. Then, when I got to Cornell, I was waiting for 2016 because that was when I would graduate and truly be an adult. At this point, both of those years have come and gone bringing with them good and bad. Bringing with them just exactly what was meant to be. Over the course of the last few weeks, I’ve had many a conversation with the women above about my “year in review.” Things I liked. Things I didn’t enjoy so much. Things I need to work on. Triumphs. Tribulations. Blessings and blessings in disguise. 

    Through a conversation with another friend (not pictured) I came across the above video again and it stuck with me this time because it speaks directly to where I’m at in life. The stuff about men, while relevant and a great reminder, was not the focal point of what I took away from the video though. 

    Eighteen was for first loves. 
    Nineteen was for heartbreak. 
    Twenty was for being a hot mess. 
    Twenty-one was for recovery. 
    Twenty-two has been for joy, separation, and elevation. 
    Twenty-three will be for young??? womanhood. 

    I’m turning twenty-three this year. I will also be getting my Master’s degree in May. Neither of which even sound right! Beyond that and some goals for myself, I have no clue the professional and academic shape that this year will take. And honestly, truly, I’m not at all concerned about it. That’s not what I want this year to be about. 

    No, I want twenty-three and 2017 to be for writing. For exploration of self, love, God, my limits and lessons. I want this year to be for options. I want this year to be for keeping men around that make me happy even if they and I are going no where at all because maybe for the moment that gets to be enough. Gets to be all I want. I want this year to be for reading. For voraciously devouring any and all information I come across that intrigues me, challenges me, scares me, feeds me. I want this year to be about being a bit more self-serving and moving with more confidence in my inter-personal relationships. For recognizing that anyone I fall back from that doesn’t come back isn’t someone I should want around in the first place. For being a bit more cynical and a lot less willing to share myself with others. For traveling to more corners of the earth for the lesson and not as a performance. For crossing over. For taking up all the space I choose to and getting over my fear of being alone. For figuring out who is worthy of the gifts I have to bring and learning to be a little less forthcoming. For practicing detachment because anything I truly have won’t require a death grip to keep it intact. For continuing to love and live with all the energy I can muster. For never shying away from an experience, person, or moment because it might be painful or not work out the way I hope. I want this year to be about acceptance and self-celebration. Fiscal responsibility and laying a strong foundation for the future. For businesses and manifesting my dreams with discipline and passion. 

    I want this year to be about “doing my 20s wrong” and LOVING every moment of it. 
    For twenty-three and 2017 to be about becoming the person, the woman I’ve always wanted to be and living as presently as possible in her moment. No waiting. No praying for years to come. No tying my self-worth up in a man or diploma. 

    Just me. 
    It might not be my year, but it damn sure will be for me.  

    Gabrielle Hickmon
    Gabrielle Hickmon

    Find me on: Web | Twitter


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