On Monday, I celebrated my birthday - 25! I can’t believe I’m a quarter of a century old. I truly fluctuate between feeling like I’m 12 and feeling like I’m 80. TBD where the happy medium is.
While I understand people’s fear about aging eventually, I honestly look forward to birthdays rather than dread them. It’s a neat time to reflect and it’s cool to know that you’re moving into another year with more wisdom and experience.
This year, I was lucky enough to have my best friend Emily (yes, we really do share the same name) visiting! We celebrate the day with a trip to the zoo, drinks with friends and a taco dinner. It was a good way to ring in a new year.
Years ago, I started a tradition to ask people a set of three questions on their birthday (you can check out my post on this from last year here!):
What three things did you learn in the past year of life?
What were three of your favorite moments and memories of the past year of life?
What are three things you are looking forward to in the next year?
So, per tradition, I spent a lot of time pondering these questions myself earlier this week and reflecting on the last year of my life.
24 was a pretty good year. I started dating Justin who has added more to my life than I ever thought possible, I traveled to Cuba and Joshua Tree and Austin and Wisconsin, I embarked on a new job and career path, I spent a lot of time in nature, I completed yoga teacher training and I moved. I also spent a ton of time with friends, a lot of hours reading and too many hours hanging out with my cat, Walt…all things that make me really happy. I had some low moments, for sure, but honestly, the good outweighs all of it. I’m extremely grateful.
Beyond these highlights, 24 felt like a year of discovery. It was the first year in so many years that I didn’t run. I really dug into who I was outside of the sport that I had let define me for so long. I learned new ways to manage my anxiety. I learned so much about myself through yoga teacher training. All in all, I feel like this year, I took myself out on a date and really go to know me. Weird metaphor? I’ll stop there.
Anywho, after some reflection on all these highlights, I ended up here:
What I learned:
To bring greater awareness to my reactions. To take a moment and consciously breathe and pause before I react. It’s a work in progress, but hey, progress is still progress!
To find joy in the small and unexpected.
Timelines are bullshit and pretty arbitrary.
My three favorite moments:
Taking the next step in Justin and I’s relationship and moving in. I know people talk about the adjustment to living together, but without sounding too sappy or idealistic, it’s been pretty magical. Who knew all these ordinary moments (i.e. making dinner, falling asleep on the couch, cleaning) could be so fun - and that I could look forward to coming home everyday so much.
Walking down the streets in Cuba and witnessing people dancing and kids playing and dogs and cats running around. Amidst so much financial poverty, there was so much cultural wealth. It really made me wonder what we place our value and happiness in and was hands-down one of the most beautiful celebrations of life I’ve been able to witness.
Graduating yoga teacher training. I can’t write too much about our graduation experience, but it was powerful and emotional and perfect. I graduated with a group of strangers that had become friends - including myself.
What I'm looking forward to:
Getting back into fiction writing and letting the creativity flow.
Spending another year with Justin and seeing where our relationship takes us.
Hopefully some travel! (HMU with your cheap recommendations - lots of weddings this year, so have to keep it budget-friendly!)
Who knows what 25 will bring, but I’m excited and I’m here for it.