In a mere eleven days, I’ll be turning twenty-eight years old.
As a matter of fact, I’ll be turning twenty-eight on the twenty-eighth, which means this year is my golden birthday!
I’ve imagined my golden birthday on many occasions, and always seem to conjure up visions of travelling with a group of friends to New Orleans or Las Vegas and wearing a sparkly gold dress so that I would literally be golden on my golden birthday.
Yes, these are the things I choose to occupy my brain with.
Instead, we’ll be spending the weekend with Scott’s family, who is coming to visit us in Minnesota for our annual summer get together. Honestly, playing sand volleyball and going to the lake will probably be a lot more fun than spending way too much money on sparkly mini skirts and plane tickets–even if it means I’ll be covered with mosquito bites as opposed to gold sequins. The older I get, the more I realize that spending time with those you care about trumps wearing a fancy outfit any day of the week. (Managing to do both at the same time? #Winning.)
My upcoming birthday has caused me to think less about sparkly dresses, and more about my existence in general. Realistically, I’m about 1/3 of the way through this big adventure we call life. This has made me consider where I’m at and where I want to go next. What have I already accomplished? What do I still want to accomplish? Is this where I thought I’d be at the age of twenty-eight?
I believe major life events, and birthday’s in particular, are a great time for a good old self-evaluation. Let’s see how I measure up.
Stuff I’m proud of:
Earning my master’s degree: Let’s just say I’m glad this is out of the way.
My job: I got really lucky here. I work as a web designer at one of the best organizations in the world. I love the people I work with and the changes we are striving for.
My marriage: Spoiler alert: marriage is not easy. Not at all. The day after my birthday Scott and I will celebrate our fifth anniversary. It’s been extremely challenging yet incredible rewarding — I’m particularly proud of this one.
Starting this blog and working on my book proposal.
My friends: I have an amazing network of people I’ve been lucky enough to know as a result of my time spent in Washington, New York, Nebraska and now Minnesota. When I think of the special peeps I know all over the country, I can’t help but smile.
Being SO INCREDIBLY CLOSE to paying off our student loans. There may or may not be a trip to Australia in the works once this goal is accomplished.
Stuff I need to work on:
Save more money: Believe it or not, I think the plan is to stay in Minnesota and (gasp!) buy a house. This means I need to stop giving all of my money to Nordstroms and fatten up our piggy bank a
Arrange life and finances so that Scott and I are able to start a family: Insert second gasp here.
Spend more time on my book proposal: This is currently my biggest goal, and I’ve been majorly slacking.
Be a better wife: I’m trying my best to tame my control-freak tendencies and lighten up a bit, for the sake of Scott’s sanity.
Get my fitness and nutrition in line: Moving to Minnesota caused me to fall off the wagon, and I’ve been wallowing in a pool of greasy apple fritters ever since. It’s not pretty. (But it sure has been tasty!)
Focus on the important things: I’m
pretty incredibly materialistic. This needs to become less of a priority in my life.
Be less of a people pleaser: While I’m incredibly honest on this here blog, I tend to be kind of a push-over in real life, and have serious issues with confrontation.
Stuff that’s surprised me:
I don’t have it all figured out: As a teenager and woman in my early twenties, I thought that surely, the magic switch of adulthood would have flipped on by age twenty-eight, resulting in a perfect and flawless life. I think I’m finally realizing that the magic switch of adulthood doesn’t exist.
It’s just the
two three of us: The younger version of myself would have thought that we’d for sure have some non-chihuahua children at this point. While I certainly didn’t predict that we would start a family later in life, I’m really happy with our decision to wait on the whole having kids thing.
We’re still renting: My younger self would probably be shocked to know that at twenty-eight, I would be living in an apartment. And not just any apartment. An apartment that is in walking distance of the mall. (This is the part where my younger self screams in sheer terror.) I’m learning to love the freedom of renting, and have slowly accepted the fact that when you’ve moved six times in the last six years, owning a home isn’t always in the cards.
My metabolism has slowed down: I distinctly remember at the age of sixteen saying “I’m so glad I can eat whatever I want! I don’t know what I’d do if I ever had to go on a diet…I love food way too much.” This is the part where I’d like to go back in time and punch my sixteen-year old self in her perfectly sculpted abs and then yank on her pony tail before force feeding her a giant salad covered in non-fat dressing.
I’m becoming my parents: Both of them. I look like them, I act like them, I’ve picked up their good and bad habits. I’ve also started incorporating phrases they’ve coined into my daily vocabulary. “Uff Da!”, “That really frosts me.” and “Looking sharp!” are prime examples of this.
Even more frightening? The moments I look at my reflection in the mirror and see my younger brother Janss, wearing mascara, staring back at me.
My tastes haven’t changed: Scott loves to remind me that I still have the tastes of a fourteen-year-old when it comes to television, music, and even literature. I think he’s just jealous that I know all the lyrics to “Call Me Maybe” and actually read the Twilight series as opposed to copping out and just watching the movies.
There’s so much more, but I won’t bore you with the gory details. Now, I want to know about you. Do you keep a list of goals and accomplishments your proud of? Does the course of your life continuously surprise you? Do you still have a passion for teeny-bopper bands and MTV reality shows? Spill it in the comments section–if only to make me realize that I’m not alone here.