27 Candles: My Reflections on Turning 27

Merve Yılmaz
4 min readApr 5, 2023
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Resisting the flow of time is impossible. Before you know it, your childhood is left behind, followed by your youth. Today is my 27th birthday. As I approach the end of my twenties, I cannot fully grasp how I should feel. That is precisely why I started this piece — to explore my emotions and thoughts that come with turning 27.

My 27th birthday arrived with a plenty of thoughts and feelings. Today, drawing from my own experiences, I wish to share the sentiments that come with being 27.

In reality, I find myself in a period where I truly know myself. In life, of course, there is always a feeling about whether you genuinely like or dislike something, but I noticed that I have been battling with some things. It’s as if I’ve been telling myself, “No, Merve, you need to be a certain type of girl for this to be appreciated, and it’s okay for you.”

However, I have now stopped resisting the things that genuinely make me feel bad. I think this is one of the advantages of being an adult. After all, I know myself better and can now make my own decisions. Learning to let go and to stop fighting with yourself is a significant part of adulthood, I believe.

Despite this, I still feel like I am at the beginning of a long journey. A few months ago, I decided to change my profession and started my first job in this field. It was a really difficult decision, and I need a lot of energy to develop myself. Sometimes, I do feel like I’m late to the game because of my age, but at the end of the day, who am I really competing with?

However, the economic pressures created by society and of course, my closest circle, my family, are significant. I’m talking about various expectations that didn’t exist a few years ago, like investing or buying a house. During these times, I have to admit that adulthood doesn’t always feel great. Sometimes, the stress and anxiety of living a “conscious life” that adulthood brings can make it impossible to live carefree.

Despite embarking on a new chapter in life, my experiences may not be sufficient as I am still in the process of gaining the most important ones at this age. I am sure that I am worrying about small problems that will seem insignificant to the person I will become in a year or two, but I suppose this is true for every age. After all, none of you are looking at your problems from two years ago in the same way.

At 27, I am still living with my childhood, as it would be too naive to expect to have everything figured out. However, even with all of this, my clear perspective does not fail to console me. I am at an age where I have learned what to expect from people and that despite all the voices around me, the most important one is the one that comes from within me.

And especially this year, if there are a few things that I have realized more, it is that my life belongs to me and it is valuable enough not to be consumed by anyone else. I choose to love myself and prioritize myself now.

If I had a mentor when I was younger and someone had told me these things, maybe I would have experienced some things differently. I know there are a lot of young girls who feel inadequate just like I did back then. That’s why I am sharing my experiences with you. Life passes by too quickly, take care of yourself. Comparing yourself to others will not take you anywhere.

It’s never too late to pursue big goals and achievements. You still have time to discover yourself, spend time with loved ones, achieve your dreams, and meet new people. Don’t rush through life. Savor every moment and enjoy yourself.

The uncertainties of life may scare you, but every age is full of opportunities that can change the direction of your life. Be brave, gain new experiences, develop yourself, and enjoy the beauties that life has to offer.

If my younger self saw me now, I think she would love me. I have come this far by choosing not to do the things she couldn’t do. I haven’t intentionally hurt anyone, and when I see a beautiful tree, I stop and enjoy it. If my younger self saw me now, I think she would be proud of me.

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Merve Yılmaz

• UX Designer •Istanbul Technical University •Top writer in Self Improvement, Health, Life Lessons & Life.