Hopefully, a year from now, I can report back that, at 25, I stopped and smelled the roses just a little bit more.
- October 2011, On 24
Well, I think I sucked at that one pretty much.
I kid, clearly. Another year has gone by, and it frankly feels like yesterday when I wrote that post. Time has flown and so much has changed in the past year. I think that, seeing as my goal was to “slow down, shut up, and listen,” I might call it a failure in some ways.
I will celebrate one small success though: I do think I listened. Or, listened as best as I could. Seeing as the goal was to try and figure out what I really needed, I would say that deciding to move to Honolulu to pursue something I loved was part of that.
I will also say that, with the help of some amazing people who’ve entered my life, I have gotten better at listening to my body and heart. Body by letting it recover and heal (and now pushing it to be more awesome!), heart by trying to surround myself with people and experiences that add something to my life, not drain me of good vibes.
I started this post with the intention of, frankly, doing what I did last year and setting an intention for 25. Unfortunately (and kind of fortunately, because I love my work), I have been going a mile a minute since the end of September since we not only have a huge event in 6 days (brb hyperventilating into a paper bag), but I’ve been doing some side projects with TFA as well, and haven’t felt like I’ve really had a chance to step back and take in 25 and what I want the year to entail.
Fortunately, I have an(other) awesome opportunity to travel for Teach For America again, this time to Birmingham, Alabama. Then I get to spend some time with my parents and (finally!) my older brother. That sounds like a great time to breathe and take stock of what the first year of my second quarter-century will hold.
I will share this brief reflection, though:
With all the stress and planning happening, my birthday was a smaller (and much less stressful) affair then the last. It’s the first birthday I’ve been single since I was 18, actually, so it’s the first time I haven’t had anyone but myself to really think about. It’s also my first birthday EVER outside of Southern California, so the people I normally would expect to see were 3-6 thousand miles away. None of this change was necessarily bad (though I miss my friends from the mainland), just a chance to do something new.
The night before my actual birthday it was me, some friends, a dive bar, unexpected strippers (yup), and a lot of laughing. We were tired though, and Daria took me to my car by 11:30p. When midnight struck, I was sitting on my couch, eating a banana and watching The West Wing. I was immensely satisfied: I had had a great night with friends, left when I wanted to, and was now quietly immersing myself in something I loved, simply for the joy of it.
I don’t know if that’s any kind of omen or foretelling of how the rest of the year will be, but either way, the thought of it makes me smile.