In just a week from now, on November 20, I’ll be celebrating my 29th Birthday. But, for the past year or two with all the stress in my life, I’ve already felt 30…so I guess you could say it FEELS like I’m getting a year extra boost to get everything done that I want to do in my first 30 years! The 365 countdown will officially begin in 7 days, so here goes 30 goals to accomplish in the next year…
But, before I do that, I think I need to pat myself on the back for a few notable things I’ve already knocked off the list that I am super proud of myself for. This blog has certainly helped document a few of my small victories this year, but my decade of being 20-something has been fraught with unexpected obstacles and in many ways I’m excited to wrap it all up with a bang.
DONE (in the first 29)
- backpack through europe (alone! thank you very much)
- serve a mission in Hawaii
- get hitched! And very happily mind you.
- start an etsy shop
- graduate college
- be 100% financially independent (that was a big one for me)
- stay close with best friends
- re-learn piano (thank you 3+ years of piano church callings)
- get to know grandma Jones with weekly visits (so glad I did before she passed away)
- go white water rafting with Brigham
- help Brigham get 2 masters degrees (yes, they’re mine too! I’m claiming them!)
There was a time when I was starting to come into my own, that I was incredibly gutsy and bold- almost crazy bold. People usually didn’t say the types of things that I would say. I told people (boys, authority figures, girls, whoever) exactly what I thought of them, or things, for better or worse. I loved to feel everything, and let every bit of life filter through every sensation I had, and then analyze ALL of it for hours, days. I felt comfortable venturing out of the country, or to the bathroom (you know how girls are) by myself. I loved analyzing intense social issues and bringing them up in day-to-day conversations, and I found out that other people found that refreshing. I was known to say on a regular basis “who gives a rats butt?” and I really meant it. When people asked me what I wanted to do for a living, I’d reply with 100% confidence “Whatever I want, of course” – and they bought it, and so did I. Whenever someone told me I was beautiful, I couldn’t accept the compliment unless I felt they really knew me, and were talking about my character. I still can’t. I loved people who didn’t love me back (which actually turns out to be a pretty great skill to acquire), almost defiantly, just to prove that ‘charity never faileth’ (even though a few times it did). And even though my life didn’t make a ton of sense to me at the time, or to anyone else, I LOVED being me. I was totally in love with life. I was constantly fascinated by everything. I was so faithful and prayerful and believing and I always just knew that things would work out. My best friends at the time loved me, and I loved them, and it was a big giant love fest of genuine friendship. I absolutely loved feeling authentic and alive and making my own personal touch on the world, and I loved watching each one of them do the same.
However, adult pressures and responsibilities and the need to make things work has watered me down quite a lot in the past 10 years, and I realized that I can’t always live my life not caring what others think, that I don’t really get to always do ‘whatever I want’ – and that sometimes it is nice to turn off feelings and be numb from time to time. But when the going got really tough, I went completely numb…I strove to be normal and easy to understand and I threw myself under the bus to appease people I could not please any other way, which totally didn’t work. It was miserable. And as I chucked all the quirky parts of me to the wayside, so to went my joy and lustre, and all my winning smiles (wink). The glitter that brought fascination and optimism to my life, my perspective, and my choices was hard to come by, and things that made me excited eventually burned out as I lost (so much) confidence in myself. It kind of felt like Fall was happening to my whole life, after the best, most vibrant summer and spring ever.
But if there is one thing I have observed about living in Boston, that I never could never quite grasp in California…it is that the seasons ALWAYS change! (thankfully!) Just when you have had enough of one season, there is another completely different one just around the corner – just waiting to invade your life for better or worse. And if you really miss your favorite season, it is totally legitimate to look forward to it coming back. And speaking of trees, I’ve been feeling around for my roots pretty actively since I got married and moved to Boston and especially since I started this blog, and I’ve come to the realization that the closer I get to the girl I had the courage to be at 19, the happier I am. So, here’s to being me…and blooming where I’m planted…for the next three decades!
30 BEFORE 30
- Apply for Grad School!
- Take the GRE and get a high score
- Buy a house with Brigham and fix it up
- Have a baby (but you know…can’t put a deadline on these things)
- Have our first christmas at our own home (no traveling!)
- Get my family genealogy names to the temple
- Go on a carribean vacation with friends (cruise? Puerto Rico? all-inclusive?)
- Go to a live concert (rock, classical, whatev)
- Visit the best 5 museums in Boston
- Get my ‘little boston print shoppe’ items featured on craft daily deal websites at least once.
- Go camping in Vermont
- Go to NYC to research genealogy (guess what! 90% of my ancestors came through NYC and stayed there! I guess I am an east coaster at heart…it’s in my blood)
- Remember birthdays of friends and family and send them cards/gifts this year.
- Go Dancing with Brigham (Zumba @ YMCA counts btw)
- Go zip-lining through trees
- Visit North Carolina to see Brigham’s mission
- Take a tour of Mormon Church History on East Coast
- Read ALL of the Harry Potter books
- Read the Book of Mormon cover to cover (last time I did this was years ago)
- Be a best friend and a hot wife to my husband (it’s trickier than you’d think)
- Run in a REAL race
- Wholeheartedly forgive everyone (or anyone) who has ever hurt me
- Send hand-written notes to friends/family when I think about them
- Offer some kind of service or volunteer work in the community
- Make a trip back to Hawaii to visit my mission (and my brother)
- Go to estate sales with Brigham
- Design 10-15 more items for the etsy shop (at least)
- Eat a Maine Fresh Lobster (have avoided it so far – not a huge fan of seafood)
- Visit every state in New England/North East at least once
- SMILE at everyone All the time.