Turning 25..

Turning 25 as a kid: I can’t wait to be older

Now: Literally… what is anything?

I’m one of those people who gets super excited for the arrival of their birthday. I will let everyone know that my birthday is approaching. It’s not just my birthday, or birth week, it should be known that this is the month that Samantha Rae DiBenedetto blessed the world. Okay maybe that takes it a little over the top, but if you aren’t celebrating all month long – you’re doing it wrong.

I don’t think I’ll ever understand people who are down to fly under the radar for their birthday. It’s a given that I’m a bit more vocal in general, but come on… your birthday?! I can understand that nobody really asked for this. I mean, we didn’t ask to exist, our parents just decided to make us one day. To be honest, I’m sure some of us were just beautiful mistakes and now we’re suddenly 25 and it’s very clear who has to pay our bills. The way I see it though, life is too short to be anything but celebrated. #BlessUp.. did I do that right?

Age is a strange thing. When I was younger, I remember being rebellious and wanting to grow up. Now, there are days where the simplest, most basic responsibilities annoy me or make me feel overwhelmed. For example, how accomplished I feel after doing my own laundry is baffling. Why is it looking at me and what do you mean you aren’t going to get up and clean yourself? I am officially 25. Maybe these private thoughts make me an immature 25, maybe this means I should prioritize my time better so I don’t end up staring at my laundry hamper wishing I had Matilda like powers to shoot fireballs at it from my eyeballs. Either way, age is a strange thing because at what age will you finally just embrace right now?

I’ve heard that people have a quarter life crisis when they turn 25… it’s safe to say that none of those people received invitations to my 25th birthday party because I can’t get down with that kind of energy. #GoodVibesOnly My best friend Amanda and I celebrated our 25th birthday by hosting a Gatsby Themed Party. (Note: Pre- Kardashian) A little party never killed nobody, so we danced until we dropped. I would never co-host a birthday party of mine with just anyone, it has to be a very special someone. Amanda and I met the summer of 1998 at a sleep-away camp Upstate, New York. Not just any sleep-away camp, Camp Pontiac, the greatest sleep-away camp for boys and girls. Anyways, Amanda is as quiche as it gets, and yes I just used the word quiche as an adjective. (If you don’t understand quiche when used in context I suggest you look up Ja’mie King, a fictitious character evolving from Summer Heights High)

I am always happily overwhelmed by how much love I feel on my special day. I’ve made my fair share of mistakes growing up and while it’s taught me how to be a better person, I still think it’s amazing how friends and family continuously want to support me and be there to ring in another year. People who can continuously see the good vibes in you and only want the best for you are just as much worth celebrating. So, cheers!

*25 is a milestone, not a crisis*


1. Stop comparing yourself to others.

             "It’s silly. When you open up a box of pizza, it doesn’t matter which slice has more or less toppings, or which is bigger than the other, it’s pizza. Pizza is pizza. Pizza is delicious. You are DELICIOUS." - something I saw on Instagram

You will probably never be in the same place in your life as your friends, family, co-workers, ex-lovers new girl/guy, Beyonce, Kendall, or Justin Bieber and you shouldn’t want to be. At 25, embrace doing you. If you ever have a moment where you begin to doubt yourself, stop and remember, nobody will ever be in the same place as you either! Turning 25 can feel like this constant, heavy reminder that we are at an age where we wish we had it all figured out. Whether it’s our career,  love life, travel plans, the cities in which we live, or how we spend our free time, we start planning things ahead. Let’s not forget though, we are still young enough to make any changes without being tied down to large amounts of responsibility. At this time in your life you can still make a change if you don’t like the direction any of the areas of your life are currently going. So, breathe. Really, 25 is the best of both worlds. It’s grabbing what you know you want, and moving forward, while simultaneously understanding what is not for you and just moving on.

2. I’m on a new diet called I have $10 until Friday

Like I said, maybe I’m an immature 25. Whatever, I’m still learning. The goal here is to be completely financially independent from your parents, right? I mean, that's my goal. Ok, well what they don’t warn you in school is that this is challenging. Financially independent doesn’t just involve getting a job, (not as easy these days as parents may have lead us to believe because we actually want to like going into work everyday) it means holding a job and understanding how to budget our money. I’m sorry, but there are a lot of distractions out there. It’s basically someone’s birthday everyday. #HelpMeI’mPoor

3. The older I get, the more I understand Britney Spears 2007 meltdown.

Listen, there’s nowhere to go but up once you’ve hit rock bottom. Don’t worry, a lot of us have been there. I know my major meltdown was circa 2012, when I realized I’d have to graduate college and become a real person. Yet here I am, adulting. To be honest, I actually love being an adult. Being held accountable has made me such a better person. My second major meltdown was when I broke up with my first serious boyfriend, and again, shit happens. I mean, everyone holds a special place in their heart for their first serious love, no!? What I've learned is super insightful so I'm more than happy to share it in case you too have had days where you can relate to Britney Spears 2007 meltdown: Life goes on. Sometimes, not everyday is going to be your best day, and that is okay. It is also okay if you can relate to not always feeling okay. Speaking about it reduces stigma. And so, please know that I not only support you but understand your Britney Spears ~vibes~ should you be having anxiety around your birthday and want to *talk it it out.*

4. How am I supposed to control my life when I can’t even control my hair?

No but seriously, why does my hair take 100 years to do now that I’m older? This was never such a problem growing up. *Thinks back to her childhood* Oh right, pigtails. Less fucks given. Personal stylist: Mom. Solution: Keratin, dry shampoo, beanies and the courageous chop/bob cut that changed my life. Rocking the dirty hat hair will forever be my favorite Fall/Winter Trend, because it never goes out of style. The older I get the more accepting I've become of the frequent haircut. I used to excuse gross, stringy hair because the idea of a trim would give me anxiety. With maturity, I have officially experimented with the chop/bob, alleviating the days of stringy, straw-like hair. Overcoming the anxiety around cutting my hair was such a personal victory, and I would recommend it for anyone who shares that similar struggle because it is so real and so unecessary.

5. The best cure for a hangover is being under the age of 25.

The realization that I actually enjoy having a productive day after a night of going out with friends, even if that means not really drinking. Game Changer.

6. If you do not go after what you want, you will never have it.

If you do not ask, the answer will always be no. If you do not step forward, you will always be in the same place. I’d rather know and understand that nothing is going to be handed to me. People respond well to those who are sure of what they want. The worst that can happen is that I fail. Many success stories started with failure and went on to soar. Some failure in life is inevitable, but that should not hold you back from going after what you want when you know what you want. It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all - in which case, you fail by default. In this regard, I'd rather create something worth criticizing any day than create nothing at all.

7. The pep - talks are so fine.

If you are having a day where nothing is going your way, literally find a mirror and remind yourself that you have as many hours in a day as Beyonce. The combination of your reflection and how absurd this statement is… you are guaranteed a good laugh. Also, it is okay to remind yourself that this is just, maybe, not the best day. That doesn’t make this a bad life. You are fabulous, and it is never too late to start a day over.

8. Quality > Quantity

There are some people who just won’t make the cut into your adult life. This is so fine, and by 25 you should be able to accept this. Everyone is different with how they trim the fat as they get older. Don’t take it personally.

9. Know yourself, Know your worth

A man or woman should be grateful that you made time to go out with them, and you should be just as respectful of the time they've made for you. Time is money, and in New York everyone’s “so busy.” Personally, I’m not interested in how busy you are, but if you’re making time to wine or dine me, then touché. If it turns out that they're not the one, I just tell them. None of the ghosting bullshit. Here’s an example: “Thanks so much for drinks, I had a really great time tonight. I want to be honest, I’d love to stay friends but I don’t see us continuing to date.” Majority of the time I will say this, in person. You can't expect respect from others if you don't show the same respect for them and for yourself. Life is about what feels good. Just keep moving forward.

10. Never Settle

Everyday there’s a new engagement on my Newsfeed. Not just one platform either, literally all of them: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.  When I get engaged, you better believe I’m also going to post my engagement everywhere. These couples are slap-happy, and it’s amazing. When you are single, seeing the posts makes you feel all warm and fuzzy, especially when it’s a couple that you know and love. *Unless you're miserable, because everyone has those friends who don't share our excitement and happiness. To these friends: we understand misery loves company, but can't guarantee it's gonna happen for you anytime soon with such a bad attitude. Just Sayin* So these couples are spending their lives together because they think they have found "their soulmate" or “the one.” If you’re like me, which is totally… single as fuck – don’t get discouraged! Your weirdo is out there, you just haven’t met them yet. At least that's what I tell myself? Keep dating, keep putting yourself out there. Keep doing you. The person you’re meant to be with will hit you up and the timing will be right when they're the right one. Remember: these couples were once single too - they had to play the game to find their boo. Bitches weren't born out of the womb with that rock, relationships take mad work. Ever see those picture captions where it's like "I'm soooo lucky" - Sure, they could just be really grateful to have each other. Or, more normal scenario - this couple has been through so much shit and still loves each other that even they are sometimes surprised by how lucky they are to still have found a person they don't consider themselves to be settling for. So moral of 25: Don't settle on the person you want to spend your life with, don't settle on your job, don't settle on your hairstyle, don't settle on the company you keep, where you travel, or where you live. Don't think that because you're 25 anything is "set" yet. You can change anything, anytime you want.