24

24

Almost a week ago, I celebrated my birthday - 24! - in Atlanta with one of my best friends, Alex. I love birthdays. I try to keep the celebration going as long as possible (both for me and friends), and I make it a point to travel on each of my birthdays. I hope I never reach an age where I dread birthdays. 

Years ago, I started a tradition (honestly sparked by Broad City) to ask people a set of three questions on their birthday. 

  1. What three things did you learn in the past year of life? 
  2. What were three of your favorite moments and memories of the past year of life? 
  3. What are three things you are looking forward to in the next year? 

So, last Sunday as I spent the morning kayaking,  I pondered these questions myself (and prompted Alex to eventually ask me)...and reflected on the last year of my life in general. 

23 was a year full of ups and downs. But, I'll be honest - it felt like more downs than ups. When I looked back, I thought about some major highlights: I started a new job that I love with a non-profit, I fell in love, I traveled to quite a few new places (abroad and in California), I made some new friends and reconnected with old friends. But, amidst all of this, I had my heart broken, I broke my hip two more times, I was diagnosed with a scary-sounding genetic disorder, I worked at a company I didn't fully stand by, I financially struggled and I lost a lot of friends (trying to let it go...slowly, but surely). It was a year of great career success...but a lot of personal and health-related strife. 

I sat and reflected on my questions for others as I pondered my 23rd year of life - what had I learned? What moments did I cherish? How did I want to grow this year? 

So, after a great conversation with Alex, I ended up here: 

  1. What I learned: how to be in my first healthy romantic relationship where I didn't seek out external validation, that I am a valuable human outside of running, that I have a really amazing community surrounding me in San Diego (here's looking at you, November Project and co.)
  2. My three favorite moments: Labor Day weekend spent in Nashville with both old and new friends, getting published in print for the first time since college (and writing a cover story!), watching the moon illuminate Anza Borrego in the middle of the night on a camping trip (so beautiful - I can't even articulate)
  3. What I'm looking forward to: pursuing yoga teach training, traveling (most immediately - Scottsdale, San Francisco and Cuba) and really, honestly seeing my friends and growing those relationships. 

I know a birthday (like New Year's) is just a symbolic catalyst to make a change and grow and reflect, but hey, sometimes it's needed. Sometimes, I just feel like I need a fresh start - arbitrary date or not. 

So, cheers to 24 (and hopefully more ups than downs)!

Tuesday Ten

Tuesday Ten

Me Too

Me Too