Here you are, 36-almost-37, everything bulging and crinkling at the corners and collapsing into folds. Jesus, you’re as exciting and mysterious as a carefully-packaged kitchen sponge. Once you were red in tooth and claw, made of reckless heat and fluids. Now you move slowly, no rhythm, no swing. Like someone avoiding a sandworm. You speak in ridiculous staccato bursts. Okay I—. Hey watch where you’re. Can you— GUYS. HEY.

You wear sensible shoes and you have a financial advisor and you happily google for the best methods of removing streaks from windows.

It is what it is and it’s all pretty goddamned good, you wouldn’t trade it for the etcetera. But come on. Don’t you miss it, some days? Don’t you miss being young and fucked-up? On fire, all the time. Up and down. Your heart going ba-bum ba-bum over the stupidest shit.

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Penne
Penne
12 years ago

Yes. I miss it so much.

Christine
Christine
12 years ago

Yes.

Especially now that I am 40-almost-41.

I’ve been longing for my twenties in a fucked-up way I don’t understand….even though I KNOW times were nowhere near as good as I seem to remember them being….even though I wouldn’t want to relive some aspects of my 20’s and early 30’s over again (ugh, dating? Being fresh out of college and poor? Trying to figure myself out?)….even though I have an unbelievable gift of a family and a husband who adores me and who is my very best friend and the one I want to be with….sometimes, oh, sometimes, I want to try again.

Wendy
12 years ago

I miss it sometimes. I miss my younger body, a body that I never appreciated at the time and that I would be THRILLED with now. I miss being a horn ball. I miss sleeping in and staying up late and talking too loudly and thinking everything was a possibility.

But I love my marriage and my kid and not being broke and lonely.

Maggie
12 years ago

I am 37 almost 38 and I have to say, most of the time I don’t, but sometimes I really do miss it. I get these waves of nostalgia that almost bring me to tears. Those feelings of “it will never be like that again”. It’s fine, though, I wouldn’t trade my life for anything.

Sarah
12 years ago

YES. and no. and YES.

Brooke
12 years ago

I miss it a lot. When I look at my life stretching out before me, just endless days of dead-end job and kids’ report cards, I don’t know how I’ll do it. The Prozac helps (not kidding). But at least I can look back at the pictures and journal entries that prove I was once young, wild, and free. I had good times with no regrets. So at least there is that.

Love the “Dune” reference.

kathleen
kathleen
12 years ago

as a near-er the seventh dream then the family dream, well, yes. yes it is good- i slept in today, and cooked a good lunch and will go to my grad school classes this afternoon in heels and eyeliner.

also though? it’s too quiet, too often. it’s a lot of questions. it’s a lot of lonely, of not knowing if this quiet solo life is all i will get. for all the mess and loud and not sleeping, i feel flashes of jealousy for your story too.

Meg
Meg
12 years ago

oh mercy me, despite being a bit younger than you (I am 29 almost 30), I feel this entry. And as baby #2 comes barreling down the pike I feel it profoundly. I even wrote about it a few weeks ago:
http://wetaylors.blogspot.com/2010/09/title.html

Thank you for sharing…

Erin
12 years ago

The other day I was getting wistful for my youth as my Pandora started playing songs that I first fell in love with during college – mostly Ani DiFranco, Fiona Apple stuff. I remarked to her that it kills me to think of how angry and sad we were when, really, most of the time we were drunk, high, having a lot of sex and metabolizing the copious amounts of junk food we ate at a ridiculous rate. WHAT in God’s NAME were we so ANGRY about?! Yeesh!

So, mostly I miss the luxury of youth’s problems in comparison to the ones I have now. And my metabolism, especially considering I didn’t have the athletic prowess that I do now. Well, did before I got knocked up. :)

Pete
Pete
12 years ago

Sorry, I’ve been raising kids for the last 30 years. I’m looking forward to the days of being old and fucked up. :-)

Cora
12 years ago

Oh yes. Most definitely. I’m 30 now and sometimes I find myself thinking, “This is it?” I rarely stay up late. I only get to sleep in if my husband watched the kid and then I feel guilty. I don’t feel passionate. Or excited. Or much of anything.

I fell down the rabbit hole of Facebook last night (which is never a good thing, I know) and my god. We’re all just so OLD now.

JLR
JLR
12 years ago

You have read what’s been on my mind lately. Absolutely.

Stephanie
Stephanie
12 years ago

Oh hell yes.

Anne
12 years ago

Sometimes, but not very often. I feel it is kind of “been there done that,” you know? Going back now, I think, would be kind of boring after the first, say, 48 hours.

I will say, however, that I do miss being able to work out as long as I want, and then coming home to nap, and last year I was away from home for two days on a work trip, and the uninterrupted hour I was able to take to pluck my eyebrows? Was HEAVEN.

Stephanie
Stephanie
12 years ago

Although…I will NEVER give into the sensible shoes. It’s the one thing I have left.

Maggie
12 years ago

after a bad couple of years at college, i was happy to settle down, be married for a couple of years and then have a baby. now the baby is two, the marriage is comfortable and i long for the days that i thought i was over.

Mandy
Mandy
12 years ago

No. Just yesterday after seeing some lovely teenage girls all giggly and awkward-yet-trying-to-be-cool I felt so grateful that I am an old fart now. I like being over all of that. Stodgy, if you will. But I do miss that young body, the one I didn’t appreciate then.

meeeee
meeeee
12 years ago

I’m 36 and sure, the crinkly-eyed smile and lobster-man’s wrinkle hands annoy me, but I *like* the 36 me more than I ever liked any younger versions. Plus, I pushed out two kids who pretty much think I’m kind of a big deal.

And, this sounds weird but, isn’t it kind of nice to get admiring looks from both 20-somethings AND 50-somethings? Okay, that’s just me.

Julie
Julie
12 years ago

Yes, but I never had them. I think I was born old. Sometimes I wonder what it would have been like to be irresponsible for just a little while. Not to work 2-3 jobs and carry a full class load, put up with and try to help my mentally ill first husband, not go to graduate school while pregnant or with a toddler. And not to be following my second husband’s career all over the damn place while trying to raise the kids (one of whom has ADHD) and trying to have some semblance of a career myself. God, I’m tired. ;)

Valerie
Valerie
12 years ago

NO!!!!!!!
I have to be 100% honest. I don’t miss it at all. I hated all of it. I didn’t start loving it until I married my husband. I am 31 with 2 kids, a husband, job, ect. and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

I was the one that couldn’t wait to get out of highschool and grow up. I have never regretted it nor missed it.

I know I’m in the minority on this one :)

OmegaMom
12 years ago

Oh, yeah. I miss it. The fizz and energy and zip and zing. The OMG-he-LIKES-me feeling of first falling for someone. The late night semi-drunk philosophical discussions. The giddy laughter that came for no reason, until your body ached from laughing with your friends.

Yah.

On the other hand, I do NOT miss not liking myself and always feeling on edge, worrying what other people thought about me, wondering if they liked me or thought my ass was fat. (It wasn’t then, it is now.)

Susan
Susan
12 years ago

Delurking to say that I just turned forty-six. Happily, happily married. Four wonderful kids. I know this is the good life.

But, yes. Sometimes I miss it so. goddamn. much.

Liz
Liz
12 years ago

I do. I love where I am now, and don’t want many of the things that went with being a teenager, but you’re right. The adrenaline and excitement of things for the first time is really amazing and I miss that a lot. I revisit that feeling a lot in my dreams, which I think is very nice of my brain.

Heather
Heather
12 years ago

I miss 1992 when I fell in love with him and rediscovered dance all at the same time.

I miss 2000. The new house, the vacation to Barbados, and then to Vegas 3 months later, the money, the plans, the Fridays on the patio.

I was 27 then.

It was before he died, I sold the house, I moved, I changed careers, I remarried, I had a son, I’m months behind you but with a similar plan.

He would have been 41 today, laughable in the absurdity that he has been gone so long.

Yes, I miss that time. This one is good too though.

Kym
Kym
12 years ago

I do sometimes think about all those yrs of staying up and out til all hours of the night and sleeping the day away. Being able to have sex and not fearing a 5 year old walking in on you… But I’m happy where I am right now, and thankful I had those day’s but I wouldn’t want to go back, not now anyway. I turn 37 soon and I think shit! When did that happen?? I’ll let you know if that changes when I turn 40!! :)

Tracy
12 years ago

Now is the time when all will turn against us and seek our lives.

Emily
12 years ago

Nah, this is still the morning of your life!:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AbUYJfbZ-Qc

Jonathan Richman knows what’s up.

KKF
KKF
12 years ago

hmmm. I have to put myself in the “don’t miss it” camp. Probably because I was doing it wrong. Never really drank, snuck out, stole anything or even dated until well on the other side of the college gig. Through my whole childhood/teenagerdom I never ever felt so good about myself, so confident, financially secure, emotionally resilient… as I do now. I joke with my family that I’ve been 34 all my life and now I’m just finally getting the car to go with the engine.

Interestingly, I can’t think of a single thing I’d do differently or change, given the chance. BUT if I could do a little vacation in someone else’s teenage insanity for a while… that sounds like it would be just loads and loads of psychotic fun!

kristylynne
kristylynne
12 years ago

I don’t miss it. Nope. Got my ya-yas out, in spades, long before I finally got married at 32, then started having kids at 37 after trying for years. I’m very happy to be in this boring place where I am. My squishy belly bears a few battlescars of mommyhood, and I wouldn’t want it any other way. Although I could certainly go for an adult night out with wine right about now.

shygirl
shygirl
12 years ago

Yes. And no. And yes. And no. I had a major episode of nostalgia-waffling when the big 40 rolled around, so I’ve given this some thought.

The no is mostly this: I was SO fucked up. And miserable. About things that I look back on now and think, wow, really? You had THAT much to be pissed off about? Come ON, younger self.

I took myself a lot more seriously then than I do now. Life is harder now, to be sure; but I’m happier and more comfortable in my own skin now, in a deep-seated way that I couldn’t even imagine when I was younger. And that, I wouldn’t trade for anything. (Wish I’d caught on earlier, but hey, better late than never!)

Christen
12 years ago

On days like today, when I’m bickering with my husband and talking about taxes and trying to deal with in-law stuff for the holidays… Oh God yes. And when I do something stupid or realize I don’t know shit I wish I was 22 and adorable, not 32 and just clueless. But for the most part I really prefer the stability of the present.

Peggasus
12 years ago

Nah…it’s still alright with me. I am 56-almost-57 (in January, yikes!), and I’m still having as much fun as ever! We have season tickets for our college football games (tailgate every home game), he takes a ski trip with his friends every year; I take trips with my girlfriends, and of course we DO do some things together. (Though he is in New Orleans this week on a business trip and I am quite enjoying my time alone!) My youngest (19) is coming home from school for Thanksgiving on Friday, and I can’t wait to have him back here in the house for a week. My 24yo is still here with us, he does have a fulltime job, however, so that’s good.

Oh, did I answer your question? Yeah I sometimes do, of course. Who wouldn’t? But I have had a great time. I spent a year in Italy after I graduated, had my 24th birthday and have some amazing memories from that, came back, had a great job, got married, had kids…etc. Overall, it’s been pretty much okay, and still is.

It’s what you make it. I have also always exercised, eaten well, and used moisturizer and sunscreen.

Maybe I’ll get a ‘do-over’ for my bad choices in my next life!

Katherine
Katherine
12 years ago

I only miss (supposedly) having so much time in front of me. I don’t miss what I did to myself or let others do to me. It took so long to climb out of that pit–I just want that time back now that I know what I know. And I wish others my age were at the same point on the life track as I am. I feel so oddly out all the time (40’s, never married, no kids).

Liz
Liz
12 years ago

YES! And I’m only 28. ONLY. Sigh. But no. But yes. But… I don’t know. Here’s the thing: I like feeling. Good or bad (hopefully, usually good). I don’t like being emotionless. And I am, most days. And that makes me sad. (and yes, I know that makes no sense, but I think you get what I mean.)

Leigh
12 years ago

I felt that way at 32.

At 49, I don’t miss it at all. Well, I miss my perfect vision. But that’s it!

JennB
JennB
12 years ago

I miss some of it… I miss going to the bathroom without being interrupted. I miss going away for a weekend on a whim. I miss being able to read all day on a Sunday. I miss a quiet house. I miss late nights out at clubs with my friends, discovering new bands. I miss being single.

However, it’s nice to have a date always on New Year’s Eve, even if we’re in bed by 10:00. It’s lovely to have small people draw me picture after endless picture of something that I don’t recognize but still can exclaim over. It’s wonderful to kiss them goodnight and know that they are mine.

Wouldn’t mind a little peace and quiet some times, but it will return in due time and I’ll be wondering where my babies went. And my ambition is running full-bore, since I’m working full-time and being a mom and in school. I want to acceleration to 40, when I’ll have my MBA and hopefully new job potentials and things will be better in my 40s, right? Right? (I hope so).

Fiona
Fiona
12 years ago

43 here and miss those days not.a.jot!

Meagan
12 years ago

Not even a little. I hated being a teenager. The stronger, younger body, not even remotely worth it. For that matter, I like my older body more than I ever liked my younger body. No. No thanks.

bibliogrrl
bibliogrrl
12 years ago

Nope.

I miss my younger and more able body. I miss having the energy to go out 5 nights a week.

But I don’t miss smoking. I don’t miss OH TEH DRAMAZ.

I love my happy, much quieter life. Things are good and it took a lot of ridiculousness to get here.

Mel
Mel
12 years ago

I do miss me some Love and Rockets…. Great post!

Sienamystic
12 years ago

I’m another of those that was “born old” – aside from a few fairly minor capers, I never drank, had inappropriate but awesome sex, tried pot, taxed my more resilient body to any great lengths, or drove around at crazy speeds without my seat belt. Now, at 35, married for 13 years, I don’t miss the freedom to be completely irresponsible, but I do get exhausted because I shoulder most of the responsibility for the grownup things life throws at all of us. My beloved husband struggles every day with a really crappy mental illness, so I get to be the responsible one when sometimes I’d just like to be taken care of. So while sometimes I want to run off to a different life, I don’t really want to go backwards to my twenties.

JB
JB
12 years ago

Of course! But I’m going on a girls weekend away this weekend and immediately that undermining internal voice of doubt pipes up like its 17 years ago…
Ohmigod, I’ve got to wear swimmers… I hate my body… who will I share a room with… what if I fart in my sleep.. what if no-one talks to me… round and round..
The girl I offered a ride to took a day to get back to me and I spent that day freaking out and coming up with ways I could get out of the trip.
So yes I miss it but really nothing’s changed.

Taube
Taube
12 years ago

No. I partied enough to last me a lifetime. And the pain was so hard. I wish I could have told my lonely self “You’ll find love. You’ll get married. You’ll have twins. Enjoy the solitude you have now, ’cause you definitely won’t see it again!” I always thought 38 was old, but now I think maybe 80 is old!

dorrie
dorrie
12 years ago

Hmmm. Not really. At 43, and soon to be an empty nester, I am more focused on redefining myself in time for the next phase. Onward!

Melissa
12 years ago

Miss my 20-year-old body, yes. Miss that time, no. Not that everything is all stellar now, but I’m mature enough to recognize that and do something. And I’m totally looking forward to 40+ when my kids are older and need me less, I’m super mature (ya ya shhhh) and retirement is in sight (in theory).

Cristi
Cristi
12 years ago

So. Fucking. True.

Jen
Jen
12 years ago

I was JUST thinking about this last night. Weird.

Gena
12 years ago

I miss my not-wrinkled face. I miss my oh-so-smooth back (without bra and back fat) and I miss being able to run for miles without stopping. But, I don’t miss any of the crap that I went through from 20 to 50. AND, I sort of feel like a teenager again because I’m dating (and living with) a man that I had a huge crush on in high school. Sad though it is, it would never have happened for me unless I hadn’t lost my husband 2 1/2 years ago. And, I’m happier than I’ve ever been in my life.

It is hard sometimes, though, to remember those years…

Melissa
Melissa
12 years ago

I just miss the good things like the firm body and perky boobs. I guess I miss the freedom in a sense but I couldn’t appreciate it then. We’ll probably look back in 10 or 15 years and basically be saying the same thing about right now. Such is life!

Donna
Donna
12 years ago

No, not at all. I miss my body I had in my 20s, but not the stupidity. I was sooo strong then.
And then divorces plural, custody, working 25 years at a job that started out okay but that I finally bought my way out of? No. Not at all.
I’m trying to make good choices now, so that I don’t have to go through too much drama in the future. But I’m not holding my breath either, just cause I’m old, doesn’t mean I’ve gotten any smarter.
No.