Do you know your Chinese Zodiac? Well, you’re going to need it to before starting this post. Here is a good place to start the discovery: Chinese Zodiac Calculator.
I know my every kind of zodiac. Astrological, Chinese, the random Buzzfeed quiz that assigned new zodiac signs based on my favorite pizza toppings – I know mine. I am a planner and a self-discoverer, so I like to know anything and everything about my life and what could happen in it. It takes the shock and surprise out of everything which is perfect for me because I hate both of those things.
So, if you follow the Chinese zodiac, there are 12 animals. Since each year coincides with a certain animal, your “animal” will repeat itself every 12th year of your life. Essentially, your year will repeat when you are 12 years old, 24 years old, 36 years old, and so on and so on.
Well, what does this mean?
Chinese astrology states that those in their zodiac year displease the God of Age, and in turn, suffer his curse. Your zodiac year is assumed to be a year of extreme changes, and some believe you will carry around bad luck. However, I like to believe what my mom says about it, “Your zodiac year will bring about life changes. These will be neither bad nor good. They will just be changes. It is how you deal with these changes that will determine the outcome.”
After learning this, I did some polling with my friends and family to ask what their 24th years were like. I thought I would have a lot of mixed reviews.
I was wrong.
Some moved across the country. Others made huge career changes. Some lost people they loved. At least 3 had dramatic breakups. A few felt alone and changed their entire friend groups. Each person had at least one very significant change to describe that year in their life. The argument could be made that you can probably pick out a defining event of every year of your life, but 24 seemed to be one of self-discovery, heartbreak and hard lessons learned by each individual I talked with.
I think it is safe to say that every year of my 20s has felt dramatic and uncomfortable and anything but normal. Yes, I have only had three years rapport in this decade, but 24 started off on one of the lowest notes. There’s something to be said about knowing you may be heading into the hardest years of your life so far and making peace with it. I’ve always trudged ahead hoping and partly expecting the road to be smooth and easy.
Luckily, I am not that person anymore. I know there may be even darker days in my future, but also my best days are yet to come. I refuse to allow 24 to be labeled as one of the worst years of my life if I can help it. I hope to never have “worst years,” but just some years weirder than others.
If you are the lucky ones who have survived 24, just remember to keep up the courage heading into 36. If you are like me, tripping into this year just remember:
24 may suck. But at least it ends and then we will be able to rent a car at a reasonable price.