28.

September 22, 2014

'Tis the week of my birthday, my favorite time of the year, of course.  My birthday is special, not only because it's my birthday (and who doesn't love their day of birth), but also because it is the first day of Fall.  I swear magic happens on this day.

I'll be 28.

28 is going to be celebrated with the most adult-day ever, and not necessarily by choice, but more by obligation.  I will take the day off, have coffee with a friend, lunch with my mom, a meeting to discuss the golf tournament I am helping to plan (note: I know nothing about golf, it's fine), teach a Zumba class and go to a Dave Ramsey Financial Peace University class.  Right?  Most adult birthday ever.  Luckily I will get to celebrate with friends and family later in the week, but the day of will be quite different than what I'm used to.  

And oddly enough, I'm totally okay with it.

When I was 23 or 24, an older friend of mine told me how much she was enjoying her mid-to-late twenties.  She felt like she was really understanding who she was and was finding her footing in this world.  Looking back at that time in my life and staring at it how it is now, I would have to completely agree with my friend.

When I was 23 and 24 I was a hot effing mess.  Don't get me wrong, I'm still a hot mess, but a different kind of mess altogether.  Different stages of life will bring different stages of mess.

I spent my 23rd birthday (my golden birthday!) in Peru, loving life and getting a different nose ring for my newly pierced nose.  I know.  I don't even have the nose for a nose ring, but by golly I got one.  That was a fun conversation to have with my mother over the phone.  "I'm not telling your father!" she'd exclaimed.  The nose ring only lasted 3 weeks and she did tell my dad a few years later.

My 24th birthday was spent in an old city but during a new chapter.  I'd just (like JUST) moved back to Tuscaloosa for work.  A group of old and new friends gathered at a bar to hang out and celebrate.  I had sushi for dinner and people kept buying me shots.  We got to the bar at 9 pm and left at 3 am.  Talk about a HOT MESS.  I suffered an emotional, physical and mental hangover for at least a week, asking myself over and over what I was doing with my life.  I didn't really party in college until I turned 21 and I felt like I was trying to rehash all the times I should have been at parties and wasn't.  Wasn't the shining moment of my life.

Now, at 28, there will still be a party and still be celebration, but in a different way.  The concept will be the same but the stages of life of those involved are different.  And really, the most exciting thing about turning 28 is that I have found my footing a little sturdier in this world than I had the year before.  And the year before that.  And the year before that.  I'm still continually figuring out who I am and where I want to go in life, but with a different focus on the forefront.  No longer is my focus in trying to get a particular boy to like me or trying to figure out what else I can do to seem cool; my focus now lies in continuing to see my identity in Christ.  When our mindsets change to focus on loving and serving God, everything else seems to fall into place or fall away.  Grateful for this perspective and for the grace we are shown.  Especially for the grace.

I love [most] change and am always ready for a new season.  Excited to see what lies ahead. 

 Golden Birthday in Peru.  The stage in my life where I felt it necessary to sit through excruciating nose pain because I thought it would be fun (not cute) to have a nose ring. 

Golden Birthday in Peru.  The stage in my life where I felt it necessary to sit through excruciating nose pain because I thought it would be fun (not cute) to have a nose ring. 


 24th in our favorite Tuscaloosa bar.  Before I so gracefully embarrassed myself.

24th in our favorite Tuscaloosa bar.  Before I so gracefully embarrassed myself.

 Almost 28.  Clearly, I've matured.

Almost 28.  Clearly, I've matured.