I am 35

Something I wrote after a session of my creative fiction writing class, after reading and discussing “Eleven” by Sandra Cisneros


I am 35 years old. But what that means is that I am also 34 years old, 33 years old, 29 years old, 22 years old, every age in between, 15 years old, 8 years old, all the way down to one year old.

The part of me that is 34 is ready for something new.

The part of me that is 33 is the one who recommends therapy to everyone.

The 32 year old in me realizes that being an adult doesn’t mean I have to grow up.

The one who loves having the house to myself is 31.

When I feel like I can control the mood of any room I’m in, I am 30.

The 29 year old reads advice columns.

28 – that’s the adventurer, the one who needs to wander but is not lost.

27 is the one with too many t-shirts.

At 26 I became the one who makes my own destiny.

When I am depressed, I am 25.

24 is the one who isn’t always a good friend.

23 is the one who is settled down.

When I laugh long and hard, I am 22.

It is the 21 year old in me who smiles big to show off my straight teeth.

My 20 year old self is the one that keeps secrets.

At 19 I became the one who doesn’t want kids.

When I worry about talking too much or too loud, I am 18.

It is my 17 year old stomach that hates whiskey.

I love to drive with the windows down, I am 16.

When I feel a strong attachment to my brother, I am 15.

The one who is skeptical that I can have female friends is 14.

13 is the drama queen, the one who wants you to see me cry.

12 is the one who writes everything down.

When I am scared of bears, I am 11.

When I am scared of dinosaurs, I am 10.

The one who makes me want to hide my tears when I cry is 9.

The one who shuts down whenever someone yells is 8.

My 7 year old self is the one who cannot let autumn leaves go uncrunched or puddles unstomped.

I am 6 when I hug my stuffed animals tight.

I am 5 when I bite my nails.

The part of me that doesn’t bother to color between the lines is 4.

The one who needs to be held is 3.

The one who has to touch everything is 2.

The one who watches is 1.

I am 35 years old. But I don’t know what that means yet. Ask me again once I’m 36.