Age is just a number

12th January 2016

Age is just a number

It was my 22nd birthday last Wednesday, and so what a better time to talk about age than now.

Recently, when I was listening to My Generation by The Who, probably for 10,000th time, I got thinking about the famous line…

“I hope I die before I get old.”

It’s funny really because the man who wrote this song, Pete Townshend, is now 70 years old, and Roger Daltrey, who sings this lyric, is now 71. Most people would consider 70 to be old, yet I don’t see these two men as being old. Not at all.

If they really hope they die before they get old then they’re safe for many more years.

Age is just a number, and these two gents are living proof of this. Getting old is a choice. Your age does not define who you are and how you should live your life.

I mean, if you observed how my grandparents acted at 70 and compared this to how Pete and Roger act at the same age there is a massive difference. I can’t image my grandparents standing on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury, singing and playing guitars, or even just wearing jeans for that matter!

At the end of the day, it all comes down to ourselves and the life we choose to live.

Some people choose to be old before their time. My mum always recalls meeting my dad’s mother and thinking that she was old even then, and she was probably only in her 40s at the time. But it doesn’t have to be like that. You don’t have to change your dress sense because you feel you should be dressing more “age appropriate”. You don’t have to stop doing the things you enjoy doing in life because you reach a certain age.

I’ve been thinking more and more about age ever since finding out back in November that I will require a hip replacement within the next 10 years. Of course, hearing this made me quite depressed. I kept thinking about how I would be old before my time, because only old people have hip replacements. I’ll have to use a wheelchair for a short period of time, and I will require the aid of walking sticks as I recover from the surgery. I’ll struggle to get up stairs, to get in and out of bed, and perhaps worst of all, struggle to shave my legs!

But having an artificial hip doesn’t have to define me. It can if I allow it to, but it doesn’t have to. It’s my choice.

In the same way that age doesn’t have to define you as “too old” it also doesn’t have to define you as “too young”. Well, for a lot of things anyway.

For example, people always give me a really questioning look when I say I’m saving to buy a house. Why? Because I’m 22? What’s wrong with that? Just because I’ve worked out at a young age that it’s better to be paying a mortgage and owning a house at the end of it than paying rent for a flat that will never be mine. I’m not too young. If I have money for a deposit (which I don’t yet, but I’m on my way!) and an income to pay a mortgage then why the hell not?!

People gave me the exact same questioning look when I said I was planning on getting a flat and moving in with Tyrone. We were 19 at the time and of course people said we were “too young”, but we did it and we are still here over 2 years later, happy and enjoying our life together.

I’ve never let age define who I am or what I do in life, and I am determined to have that attitude for the rest of my life.

Age is just a number. Just digits. Nothing more.

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  1. Huge round of applause for this post. I have always believed that age is just a number, it might seem that way because I’ve been in relationships where the person I was with was younger than me. People will always judge. And most of the time they are either jealous or don’t understand. I think you are very mature for your age, you’re independent and strong-willed, something that other people at 22 are just completely atrocious at. Your age does not define you at all. I have met other people around our age who are mature beyond their years, too. Age has nothing to do with experience or the way we think or grow.

    I have been thinking about saving for a house for a couple of years now. It isn’t hard, if you save when you’re young, and if you can manage spendings then it’s not bad investing in something like a home. Being too young for x, y, and z sounds ridiculous. Sometimes it makes me sad the way people make comments about something someone does, simply for their age.

    I have to admit I am wowed when people younger than me get married, run their own business, or anything that seems ‘grown-up’. But I’m wowed not because they are younger, but just because at their age I myself wouldn’t have been thinking about any of that. And that’s totally OK, as long as I’m happy with being myself. :)

    • Holly

      Thank you. :)

      I never really think about age and relationships (probably because Tyrone and I are the same age) but I really don’t think it matters. Like you say, some people just get jealous.

      I also get frustrated when I hear people make comments about people being too old or too young to do something. Especially with things like marriage and having children. I just hate it when people say “Don’t you think it’s about time you got married?”. I’ll do things when I’m ready, and not when the rest of the world thinks I should be ready.

  2. I agree. I feel younger in my 30s than in my 20s because I changed the way I look at things. If you are going to buy your first home in your early 20s this means you will finish paying the house earlier and you retire. Having your own house also means you can make it as you wish and you everyday life is better because you’ll feel more comfortable at home.

  3. Susanne

    Buying your own house is the best investment you can ever do. It’s a fantastic freedom being able to do what you want, both in matters of renovations, playing music all night, and to actually OWN your home. Most people around here take loans to pay for houses, but even if you pay every month, you pay it for yourself, not so some random person or business.
    We’re actually going to sell our house, but only to buy a smaller and less maintenance-craving (is that even a word? lol) house.

    • Holly

      Exactly! For the same amount I am paying to rent a tiny one bedroom flat with terrible neighbors I could be paying the mortgage on a home that I would own at the end of it all. I just need that deposit now!

      That’s sounds like a great idea!

  4. Elena

    Yes, well written! This is so accurate and it made me really happy to read. Both making me think back on my family, but also at people like these rockstars who still live like they are in their 20’s. Because why should they not, we all make out own decicions and we should not make them just to please everyone else.

    I always thought the same thing “I would rather die than be old and boring”, but as you say it is just a number. My grandfather at 80 was more active than I probably was at that time. He walked for an hour every day, cut his own (huge) lawn, made a lot of things out of wood and fixed everything that needed fixing himself while wearing jeans :P

  5. Belated Happy Bday!

    I loved the post! This topic is especially close to my heart because, since I crossed 20s, people have been always keeping an eye on when I get married. I don’t believe age has got anything to do with what you should be doing, especially when you are young. I still have an year of college to go, and lots to do before getting married I feel. But I wish the people around would stop treating each bday as some milestone for something to happen after that particular age is reached.