I’m 25 today. Some people call this quarter-life, but I’m a facts person and statistically speaking my life expectancy as a healthy woman (regular workouts, regular drinking, mostly healthy eating, living in Dallas county) is 80.2 years meaning, technically, I hit a third-life milestone. Third-life means you’re fine, not crazy. Right?
I’m not so much a believer in the quarter-life crisis phenomena, though I see how it could easily happen to me or to anyone around me. In addition to being a facts person, I’m also an emotions person so I totally know how the combination of nostalgia, wishes not granted, dreams come true and general length of twenty-five years behind you could pile up into a mound of feelings. And we’ve all just realized how complicated I am as a human.
Twenty five years.
When I was young, my imagination stretched only to age 21. I figured once I got to 21, the rest would be a cake walk because then I’d graduate, get a job, get a husband, get a cat, get a baby, get rich, retire and then eventually die. In that order, and that streamlined. Clearly, 16 year old’s thoughts about adulthood don’t win out in this world.
Which is fine.
Because since age 21, I’ve learned, stretched and hurt more than I thought possible. I’ve felt extreme joy, jealousy, compassion and passion. Probably all in the same week. But more than anything else, here on this day, I can finally say the feeling I feel the most is gratitude. Thankfulness for all I’ve been given and all that’s been withheld, all I’ve deserved and not deserved. Happy the way I see things, want things, isn’t always the way they go and the way things go doesn’t always work for me.
I’m also thankful my birthday is in January, when the year starts fresh. New Year’s Eve is so quick, so sparkly and I never feel like I have time between the rush of the holidays and presents and food to really take inventory of myself, my year. Those 8 days in January before my birthday, though? I use those.
So, what do I want most now?
- To primarily operate out of an attitude of thankfulness, because I believe only then are you joyful
- To get over myself and stop my jealousy
- To stop being jealous by starting to live out my dreams
- To live out my dreams
- To count blessings more than hurts
- To work smarter
- To lift others up
- To smile more
- To teach Jackson to stop eating walls (I mean…)
- To write more
- To notice more – the details are where you find it, I really believe that
- To live bigger, more uncomfortably, in the awkward places and spaces I try to shy away from
- To stop talking about being single, sad, or anything else not on my wish list of life
- To do my dishes regularly (this will be on my birthday list indefinitely)
- To learn a new skill
- To rest
- To stop feeling guilty about anything
- To pray
- To release expectations of others
- To bake more
- To quit Facebook
- To travel, far and frequently
- To trust in Jesus, the Universe, the plans I don’t get to make for me
- To savor the good days, foods, moments – to enjoy something so much I have to close my eyes to feel it
- To make it to 26 with love in my heart and grace in my hands
Simple, easy, straightforward. I typically don’t make resolutions or numbered goals. I’ve found in the last four or five years, my goals are similar yearly: to live gracefully, content with the items I get and share as much as possible – but twenty five is different and I felt it required a bit more intention this year.
Happy birthday to me, and happy New Year to you.