Today is my last day as a twenty-something.
To celebrate, I am eating Golden Grahams for breakfast as I write this.
My twenties have been good to me. From being in college, to setting up a college fund. From living at home, to buying a home. From never having had a long serious relationship, to being with Aaron for five and a half years now. Life has certainly changed and evolved over the last decade, mostly for the better.
This blog won’t be perfect or polished, as I’m squeezing it in during nap-times, to make sure I get it done today. I just wanted to write on this day, as a 29-year-old, to mark this time in my life, look back and look ahead.
Obviously it’s impossible to encapsulate (or even remember) all the major milestones of an entire decade in a short blog entry, but I just wanted to give a shout out to some of the events, experiences and people that have made my 20s memorable.
Before age 20, I had only traveled to three states: the West Coast. Since then I have traveled to close to 25 more and have witnessed so much more of our country’s natural beauty, vivid culture, kind people, and feats of human achievement. I love to travel and can’t wait to see the rest of the states…heartland here I come!
Throughout these travels I’ve had some once-in-a-lifetime experiences, like attending the National Prayer Breakfast in D.C. and the Country Music Association awards in Nashville. To be surrounded by people of such talent and achievement always inspires me.
I’ve driven the skinny bridges over the Florida Keys, traveled Southeast Alaska by ferry, ridden a mechanical bull in Vegas, walked along the creeks of my husband’s tiny hometown in Iowa, and laughed until I cried at Book of Mormon on Broadway. I could go on and on of course, but these are just a few experiences that have shaped me, stuck with me, or in the case of the bull, shamed me. ; )
I have gotten to write! The beginnings of a novel that’s been in the works for several years now, for local television and magazines, for my University’s paper, and now for this blog. I have discovered some of my favorite books, like Snow Falling on Cedars and The Secret Life of Bees. I have re-ignited a passion for reading and writing.
I have learned how to be a business owner alongside Aaron and have witnessed the brilliance and brawn he exerts daily to make our company thrive, and to provide for our family.
In my twenties I lost an amazing grandmother and gained an incredible son.
I married my wonderful husband.
I got to walk through each week of pregnancy with my also pregnant best friend. A journey I will never forget.
I have had my mind blown by the magnificence of the human body through the wonder of giving birth.
I have met so many good people, forged new friendships, and allowed those that had run their course to drift away.
I have gained nieces and nephews, brothers- and sisters-in-law, a mother-in-law and our family dog. All have made my life fuller and richer, and have taught me a great deal.
I have celebrated with both of my parents as they retired after decades of work providing for my brothers and me.
I became a runner! Not a hardcore everyday runner, by any means, but someone who actually makes it all the way around the lake. Amazing!
I have seen my friends do amazing things like become doctors and mothers and world travelers and philanthropists.
I have had seasons of drought and seasons of plenty in my faith. Both have been important.
I will close with a passage from The Color Purple, which will be the last book I read in my twenties as I plan to finish the final pages today:
“She say, Celie, tell the truth, have you ever found God in church? I never did. I just found a bunch of folks hoping for him to show. Any God I ever felt in church I brought in with me. And I think all the other folks did too. They come to church to share God, not find God.”
I love that passage. To me, it’s a reminder that God isn’t fancy or formal or formulaic. God is in us, and seen through us, His greatest creations. We share bits and pieces and glimpses of Him with one another more than we’ll ever know.
So bring it on, 30! I am BLESSED to have reached this age and would not dare take it for granted or look this gift horse in the mouth.
Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many. –Author Unknown