I’ve never been a big Taylor Swift fan, but there was a day that I could sing “Picture to Burn” with all the bitter venom of the next girl. Her songs were, quite simply, relatable.
When I first heard her newest song, 22, I thought it was catchy. It was teenage angst moved into the next generation…the anthem of the single twenty-somethings stuck somewhere between the free-from-responsibility life of college and adulthood. Sounded good.
And then I realized that I was 22 when my son was born. For me, twenty-two didn’t mean making fun of my exes or falling in love with strangers. I wasn’t “happy, free, confused, and lonely”.
I realize I wasn’t exactly the typical twenty-two year old. I had been married two years, had a college degree, a mortgage, two dogs, and a baby on the way.
To some that may sound terribly sad. They may feel like I wasted my years of freedom and tied myself down too early. In many ways, they’re right. I never studied abroad, worked my way up the career ladder, or spent a year on the mission field. Twenty-two, for me, didn’t look like twenty-two for the rest of the world.
And that’s okay.
You see, twenty-two looks like something different for everyone, simply because God has different paths for all of us. For me, His path was getting married and starting a family young. It didn’t include years of singleness and crazy experiences.
But lest you start feeling sorry for me, I want you to know that I really am a happy twenty-something. I love feeling young and carefree and trying new things. I’m blessed to have a husband who works hard to support us, so that I can have the time to both take care of my handsome little guy and pursue all sorts of interests in my free time. Since becoming a stay-at-home mom, I feel happier and freer than I ever have. I know I’m right where God wants me. I dream, and I see those dreams realized. My days are simple, but incredibly rich and full. My husband and I go on lots of crazy adventures…just with a baby in tow.
Yes, I’m a mom and a wife. But I am not in bondage. You see, true joy and freedom can only be found when you are right in the center of God’s plan for you. And that’s where I am.
As crazy as it sounds, it’s possible to embrace both the responsibility and carefree spirit of being twenty-two. I know, I’ve lived it.
And so I embrace who I am today.
I am a wife and a mom. But I’m also twenty-something.