I’ve noticed that lately, you can’t go a day on Facebook without some "Baby Boomer" or "Generation X" adult lamenting about the state of our generation.
They point out that we don’t go anywhere without our phones. They scoff at the way we feel the need to tell the world what we’re doing every minute of the day. Dozens of articles come out on a daily basis like "Why Life Was Better in the 80's" or “10 Ways the Newer Generations Are Doomed.”
They criticize us for how often we use our computers, but it’s not our fault that they computers of their time had to stay on a desk and took hours to load a single page thanks to the crappy dial-up modems of the past. If their computers had been equipped with Netflix or YouTube, I’m sure they would’ve used them just as much as we do.
They criticize us for how often we’re on our phones, but it’s not our fault that their phones could only make phone calls and were roughly the size of your average brick. Our phones are capable of calling, texting, video-chatting, shopping, paying our bills, holding all of our music, checking our grades, giving us the news, telling us directions, and literally a million other things.
They criticize the way our generation feels the need to tell the world what we’re doing every other minute, but thanks to social networking sites, we are no longer confined to the town in which we live. In seconds, we can see what people in Tokyo, Dublin, or Zimbabwe are doing at any given moment. We are aware of news the very second it happens, instead of waiting hours for the major news networks to put it on TV or print it in the next day’s paper. Thanks to social networking, we can stay in touch with friends in other states or even other countries. We can witness major life events like a baby’s first steps or a distant family’s marriage ceremony, even if we were unable to be there in person.
They can complain until their faces turn blue, but it won’t change anything. I’m sure our parents’ parents complained about stuff too: like the way teens used to feather their hair, wear parachute pants, and blast MC Hammer on their boom-boxes.
The point I’m trying to make, fellow Millennial, is that the older generations are always going to find something to complain about. They’re always going to prefer the way things were when they were growing up, and one day, we’ll be in their shoes.
Your kids will roll their eyes when you talk about how your eyebrows used to be “on fleek” and Taylor Swift’s “Blank Space” will be “old school” to them. They won’t understand your reference when you break into song at the phrase “about a week ago." Instagram, Snapchat, and Vine will most likely be the new Myspace, and newer, hipper social networking sites will hit the scene. One day, we’ll be the old ones, reminiscing about the way things were.
So live for right now. Revel in the things happening around you. Take #basic snapchats of your Starbucks drinks, Instagram your fiercest selfies, tweet about how you’re soooo going to go on a diet after watching the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. Binge-watch an entire season of Game of Thrones and Scandal in a single night. Laugh at your favorite Vines with your friends and take a million pointless BuzzFeed quizzes about which Kardashian you’re most like or which Hogwarts house you’d be sorted into. Start using words like “bae” ironically, only to be unable to stop.
These are the things that make our generation unique, and they won’t be around forever. Eventually, we’ll have to settle down, have kids, and live in the “real world." But for right now, we’re young and living in the present. Right now, we’re experiencing all of the new things that life has to offer us, and no nostalgic adult should make you feel bad for not being born in the era of Molly Ringwald and moonwalking.
This is our time. Don’t let anyone steal this moment from you.