10 Signs You're Not As Young As You Once Were Andrea Greb

Aging. It’s one of those things that I always thought was for ‘old people’ to worry about. And now I realize that while I may not be old yet, I will be some day. As much as I like to pretend my life has not changed since I was a young lass of 18, there are some definite signs that none of us are as young as we used to be.

10.  Technology starts to seem scary. I remember when I was a little kid, I’d get really frustrated when my mom didn’t know how to do something on the computer and I did. I am now waiting for kids to start getting frustrated with me. Most 3-year-olds were using iPhones before I learned how. And still, I use mine for things like phone calls and texting. I don’t understand Instagram or Snapchat or any of these other wacky things that “kids these days” are using.

9.  The disappearance of your ability to metabolize both food and drink. Remember in high school, when you could eat like, Cheezits and cheesecake for lunch and wash it all down with regular Coke and still fit in your pants day after day? I remember, and I miss it. Now, it’s like I eat one thing with too much added sodium and I’m too bloated to fit in my pants for a week. And to go with your fun new inability to process food, you also get to experience and exciting new level of hangover. Ah, those halcyon days of the early 20s when you could have a late night out with your friends, and then wake up at like, 8am the next day and feel great. Now, I have two glasses of wine at dinner, and when the alarm goes off the next morning it’s like, “NOOOOOOOO WHYYYYYYYYYYY.”

8.  You can’t tell how old kids are. I think when I was a kid, I knew how old other kids were, but once someone passed age 20, I had no concept of adult ages. I still don’t (just this weekend I found out a guy I thought was my age was in fact 34), and now, I can’t tell kids’ ages, either. If they’re not in a stroller, they could be 5, or 8 or 13. Regardless, they’ll be better dressed and have a nicer phone than me.

7.  You start waxing nostalgic about the “good old days”. This is a sure sign you are turning old., because no young person is ever uncool enough to talk about how great things used to be. I keep having these moments of “Hey, do you guys remember what everything was like before the internet? When payphones were still a thing? When you had to actually watch commercials on TV?” I’m not yet to the point where I talk about how much better the old days were, which means I’m not yet geriatric, but I fear I’m getting close.

6.  You start paying for things. It’s not all bad stuff that comes with getting older. There are some high points, too. In college, we would routinely walk several miles to go out to dinner, rather than shelling out $2 to ride the subway, or the ungodly amount a cab would have cost. When you’re an adult, you’re like, “Eh, my time is worth $10 to take a cab or pay for parking.” And there’s nothing more adult than the feeling that comes at dinner with friends and you have the ability to just grab the check and say, “I got this!” rather than doing the awkward, always-short cash count of your younger years.

5.  You begin thinking about developing a “skincare regimen”. I remember when I used to just ignore all skincare ads that had “anti-aging” in them and only paid attention to the ones for acne. Now, it turns out, I pay attention to both. It’s a cruel joke that they tell you to use sunscreen as a kid when you’d rather just get outside and start playing already, and then suddenly as an adult, you’re like, well, I guess I should have actually listened to that, and now instead I will contemplate paying an absurd amount of money to have skin that looks like it did when I didn’t care about what my skin looked like.

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  1. Well. . .
    Apart from the skin regime. . .

  2. You forgot to mention, we don’t look forward to our birthdays anymore! It is like a dreaded date! haha

  3. Hilarious. I’m almost 30 and just last month almost got carded. I was with several ladies that were in their upper 30s/early 40s at a conference and I guess I looked much much younger to the bouncer when I was going in with them to a bar. I could clearly hear one of the guys at the door call out “Card her!” and start pointing at me. We all rolled our eyes and I got out my license but never needed it. Hah.

  4. In a little over a month, I will turn fifty. I have to say I’m NOT happy about it. No other birthday has ever affected me quite like this one has. Before this milestone, getting older really hasn’t bothered me. But, this one is a doozie.

  5. I am curious how old the author is….

  6. “You’ll get older, it’s inevitable, but there’s a part of you that might always feel like an overwhelmed little kid who has no idea what’s going on, and that’s okay.”

    Amen!

  7. I was always excited to turn 30 because i was like, oh wow now i’m Sex and the City age, that’s gonna be cool. But really it doesn’t feel like much has changed. I love every year, life just seems to get better.

  8. I agree with all of these except for #3, because I don’t go drinking so I don’t get carded. But if I did get carded, I guess it would be flattering. I love grocery store and furniture shopping! It’s silly.

  9. Ahh! It’s all true! Although I must say I’ve always enjoyed the aging process (27, super excited about 30).
    I used to loooove doing “grown-up” things with my mom, like going to the grocery store. It’s just more fun now because I get to make all the decisions and she isn’t there to tell me no. Hehehe.
    When I don’t get carded I think to myself, “these guys aren’t following regulations cuz there’s no way I look over 30.” …and when I am carded, I get nervous because in my head, i’m not of age.
    10 years ago, there was no way I would pay $XX on a cab. Now it’s like, “Where to, miss?” And I throw down that cash. No prob.

  10. This is totally the story of my life right now! Thank you for reminding me that I’m not alone in this “aging” thing we call life! And ps to some of you commenters – 30′s really not that scary… or 31… so don’t go calling them the “horrors” or turning 30.

    • To me it is a horror because some of us are actually scared about getting older…I had a small crisis about turning 25. It seems life is flying by and there’s not enough time for everything…

  11. It’s terrifying because IT’S ALL TRUE. I’m 27 and just checked off every one of these as I read through the list.

  12. I am turning 30 this fall. This rings true and then some. I can’t believe how old I am. Another sign you are getting old — people in their 40s and 50s seem young!

  13. This is all so true!!!! 26 sucks. I can only imagine the horror that 30 brings.

    • fortunately with age you gain more self acceptance. I had plastic surgery in my 20s and was calorie counting and desperate to be a certain weight. I’m heavier now but at 35 I totally love my body. Aging is not the big bad wolf it seems, I promise <3

      • I was a size 8 at ages 18 through 25 and I remember always thinking I needed to lose weight. I actually thought I was “FAT”!. Now I am a size 10 and age 31 and think I am prettier, happier, and healthier than ever. I have found that the older I get, the less I care about fitting in and looking “great”, and by not caring it just happens naturally. I wish I could go tell this to 20 year old me. I’d say “Size 8 is not fat you stupid little twit! Put down that Glamour magazine and go find a Kayak! You are going to love kayaking when you’re 30.”

        As you get older, having responsibilities and a job leads to having more money and freedom, which gives you the opportunity to find activities and hobbies and friends that you REALLY enjoy, instead of those you just THINK you should enjoy.

        I love being 31 and have no fears of getting older, because honestly, you couldn’t pay me enough to go back and re-experience the self doubt, fears, and drama of those earlier years. I believe life will only get better because that’s what it has been doing so far!

    • Being 30 is so much better than being in my 20s, even if I was “hotter” then. I have better personal style, give absolutely no fucks about being deemed “cool,” and have pretty much replaced things like 2-5 days of happy hour for better things like yoga or hiking or pilates and I’m not afraid I’m “missing” out on something. Once you pass your Saturn return, everything will be OK.

      • YESS! High five, fellow 30-something. Being in your 30s means more self awareness, self acceptance and other awesomeness. Boo to the metabolism thing though because, yes, that is 100% true.

        • I’ll be 30 in July, and I can attest that my metabolism just up and quit on me last month. Now that exercise and moderation-based diet I avoided for ten years suddenly is about to be my best friend.

  14. “Mom, can you hurry up and pick out some lunch meat already? I’m missing Wishbone!”

    Yeah, totally had that conversation. I was a member of the Wishbone fanclub after all!

  15. Thank you for #2 ! I’m over here like, “Okay…I’m 27…when do I get to feel like I know what I’m doing?” Also I no longer understand fashion. I specifically remember being 13 and telling my mom, “I’ll always keep up on what’s in.” I guess I didn’t expect the next wave of youngins to bastardize 80′s and 90′s fashions by picking the worst parts to revive (boy George hats and acid wash. ACID WASH!!)

    • Yeah, seriously! And wearing huge grandma glasses with short babydoll shirt dresses in antiquated floral prints. Throw on a pilled cardigan and some knitting needles and you ARE grandma. What’s up with that? Kids these days.

  16. I like getting older. I feel every single day much more comfortable in my own skin and nothing seems so tragic anymore. There are some things that I miss. Like for instance, the ability to pay for stuff I want, makes every single holiday so boring. I used to care so much for holidays and presents; now I don’t even want or care for birthday presents. I can buy everything I need on my own, and that is great; I just wish I was excited again for Christmas and what was under the tree.

  17. My “ah-ha, I’m an adult” moment came when I realized my dress socks out numbered my no-shows. :-\

  18. I can’t say I relate you your aging-cream perils but I think that’s a gender barrier more than anything. The one thing on this list I don’t agree with is number 4. I LOVED going grocery shopping and furniture shopping with my parents when I was young. I felt like a contributor in the well-being of my family. I loved jumping from couch to couch, insisting my parents try every one, looking for the one with cup holders. Today, I can’t stand the thought of having to spend an afternoon spending my hard earned money on food that I need rather than something that provides fun and enjoyment.

  19. Just the other day, I had the Spice Girls blaring from my car, singing at the top of my lungs whilst whipping my hair around and drumming my hands on the steering wheel–only to then get that strange feeling like someone was watching me. Turning to my left, I saw a car full of teenagers gawking at the almost 30-something in her Prius, rocking out to the 1997 English Girl Powerhouse. I rolled the windows up and turned on NPR.

    • I think that’s another sign…when NPR is one of your presets. Regardless, there is no shame in rocking out to the Spice Girls!

      Andrea Greb | 5/11/2013 08:05 am