I'm in my late twenties, and that feels strange to write. For so long, I was the youngest everywhere I went. The youngest in my classes, the youngest in my workplace, the youngest of all my friends.

I've always been told that I'm mature for my age. That I'm "wise beyond my years." That I was an adult born into a child's body.

I suppose it doesn't help that I'm also very short. Never even made it past five feet and two inches. Fun-sized, right? That's the euphemism people like to use in regards to my petite stature.

It's strange that I'm finally reaching that age where I, well, feel like I'm growing into myself. That I'm the age I have been acting for so long.

Why didn't anyone ever warn me that acne risks turning into wrinkles, that awkward, prepubescent curves can turn into, well, stubborn fat? Why didn't people tell me that the body can just start aching for no good reason- that it can sometimes hurt to get out of bed or after a hard work out? Did I miss that lesson?

I'm a good enough adult. I pay my taxes and take care of my skinand take my daily multivitamin. I think before I speak, and I'm rarely up past eleven at night anymore.

I am a mature woman, or at least my ID card says so. I am a grown-up, or at least my actions indicate as such.

Do you ever feel like we're all just completely faking it to the point of nearly lying to ourselves and everyone around us? Because growing up is this strange facade- we're all mentally and emotionally in these bodies without our consent. Existing and moving and transforming in ways that we never signed up for.

It's so strange that we even have this term, adulting, to describe the responsibilities and tasks that humans must do to succeed in this fast-paced world. I don't mind adulting. I never have. I feel comfortable in the structure, in the daily routine, in the ebbs and flows of authority.

But, time is such a strange paradox. Never enough, but often too much. Never at the time we need it. Never in the quantities, we seek it. Time runs on its own logic, a logic that it is entirely dominated by math and science, and yet, it feels so emotional. It feels so personal. Like time has a personal vendetta or motive for each of us.

Aging is as tragic as it is beautiful. It defines us. Without it, we would have died too young. And too many people die too young. Without aging, we can't learn about ourselves and the world around us. We can't experience the novelty of this world and soak in all of its fantastic treasures. We can't become fully human or fully actualized in the ways that we desperately want.

I'm in my late twenties. I'm exactly where I need to be- yesterday, tomorrow, and today. And so are you.

Author's Bio: 

Nicole Arzt, MS, LMFT is a therapist, writer, and collaborator for mental health professionals and individuals seeking self-growth. Check her out on Soul of Therapy.