|Turning 21 (the oldest bday picture I have on THIS computer)|
Early in the day on September 12th, I realized that the first half of my 20's were officially behind me. I started thinking about what they held and what I learned and, well, everything.
During the first half of my 20's I...
Lived in seven bedrooms in four towns in three states.
Worked in the fields of healthcare, food service, agriculture, education, business administration. This is a fancy way of saying I was a live in caretaker and nanny, part of the kitchen crew at the ranch, on a list of emergency help at the coffee shop, tending gardens everywhere I went, tutoring, teaching kindergarten science for a semester, completing student teaching requirements for K-8th grade, and teaching 6th and 8th grade, and working alongside my Mom to keep up the books at my Dad's office.
Learned a ton about gardening. Alice and Heidi and Dennis and Al and Jay all taught me so much.
Bought my first DSLR and learned to shoot in manual.
Started painting my nails again. Fun fact: I stopped in junior high because I let one of my friends convince me it was for little kids even though I knew her older sister ALWAYS had her nails painted.
Re-embraced my love of the color purple. Again, I let the dumb things my friends said about it being a dumb color convince me that it really was. See the theme here? Growing older teaches you how to care a lot less about what people think and say.
Made a list of classics to read and made a good dent in it.
Gave up on finding a stylist and learned to cut my own hair. The way I take care of my hair is soooo much different than it was when I entered my 20's. I cut it every 8 weeksish. I wash it two times a week. I let it air dry whenever I can. And...I put coconut oil in it as a deep conditioning treatment.
Got really good at being alone.
Learned to say "no" when I needed to, "yes" when I could, and to look for ways I could serve people well when they needed a little extra help. These three things pretty much shaped the first half of my 20s and I hope they are habits that I continue for the rest of my life.
Joined a church for the first time in my life.
Put my writing out there. Won a prize for it. And kept at it.
Tried new things that people thought I would NEVER do. Some things: went on a 21 mile bike ride after not riding a bike for 7 years, went bow hunting, ate goat (and bear and venison), rode a ride that I promised myself I would never ride, shared recipes, went square dancing, went to midnight premiers (The Hobbit 1 and 2 and Star Wars).
Got super into geocaching.
Drove 13 hours straight. In a blizzard. Oh, the things you'll do to see a brother you haven't seen in three years. It was BEYOND worth it.
Learned to write my own recipes.
Implemented the capsule wardrobe thing and loved it.
Made a brand new group of friends three times over (and four if you count blogging, but that one was so easy, it hardly seems worth noting). Since turning 26, I've settled into yet another group of new friends.
Sometimes it's easy to look at where we are and to be discouraged about where we thought we would be. None of us know how much time God plans for us to spend here. The minutes turn into days which turn into months which turn into years. I look around and am amazed at what God has done with the 26 1/2 he has granted me so far.
The same goes for you. Whatever age you are now is one that you have made it to by His grace. The relationships and heartaches and successes and failures all passed through His hands. He is in the business of making Himself known throughout all the earth and even if you can claim nothing else, living to pursue Him is a grand adventure!
Here's to a second half that is as full of Him as the first half was! For me. For you. For all of us.