I was so disappointed to turn 25 and feel like I’d accomplished nothing. So disappointed that I put together a list of 25 things to do in the next 25 years. I’ve accomplished some, but it’s become less important to even look at in the past few years.
Then when I turned 30 I prepared by writing down all of the lies and expectations I and the world had told me I was “supposed to have done” and burned them. I couldn’t take the pressure to “be someone specific” any more.
Now at 35, I’m just thinking about all of the amazing things I did or learned or experience last year. What a fruitful year this 35th trip around the sun has been. So here goes, a list of them, 13 to celebrate a fantastic Friday the 13th birthday!
1. I learned that Florida Targets have a better selection of jeans than North Carolina Targets … ones that fit me perfectly!
2. I feel better about myself when I have clothes that fit, even if that means buying a bigger size when I’d prefer not to or spending more money to get something of better quality.
3. Going after my dream just because I want to is a valid reason to pursue something new. I don’t need to apologize for dreaming of something different today than I did ten years ago.
4. I completed a certification in Conversational Intelligence and now count myself as a certified coach (among thousands). I also got certified in Change Management Style and Navigating Change. And Emotional Intelligence. It’s been quite a year of growth!
5. Speaking of personal growth, I found a counselor who’s taught me how to see my worth for what it is, not what the world tells me.
6. I learned how to name my emotions, figure out what I need, and live in my Adult Chair (there’s an amazing podcast about that)!
7. I’ve also done some serious “thought-work” inspired by Kara Loewentheil’s podcast, which is amazing. Just because we find ourselves thinking a negative, limiting, or anxious thought doesn’t mean we have to continue to think that.
8. I spent 2 weeks in Italy and Portugal, two places I’ve wanted to visit for a long time and I purchased a ticket and went. It was as delightful as I imagined it would be.
9. I’ve worked for the past 6 months trying to clear up my acne in a natural way to take care of my skin better! I’ve also been working out every day for the last 6 months, which has been amazing for changing my perspective on the world and my mood. Also, drinking all the water!
10. I love to read. I’ve always loved to read, but in the past few years I’ve taken control over my reading life and been more intentional. I’ve always got a book going and find that I read an average of 200 books a year. And I love it!
11. I have a type, regarding genre. I know the books I like and it’s okay that that’s what I read most often!
12. I’m capable of doing amazing things … like coaching parishes to transformation or helping to transform an entire diocese!
13. I have amazing friends who let me love on their kiddos as often as I want. My godson and his brother have brought me some of my greatest joys these past years. I’ve always dreamed of a boy smiling and running to great me whenever I walk in the door, and I’ve got it in both of them.
My life isn’t what I thought it would be at 35. That I’d know more about the world or have a husband and kids. I do know more about the world. I’ve been given a family here in North Carolina better than I ever imagined. What will the next five years bring? I don’t know. Could be anything?
When I turned 30 and burnt all my expectations, I had a new job less than 2 weeks later that brought me to where I am today as a parish coach. I couldn’t’ have ever dreamed it would happen, but it did. So here’s to a year of adventure!