I don’t fear getting older as many of my friends do. I suppose they fear the wrinkles, the grey hair. Maybe It’s because I’ve been fortunate enough to always be considered younger-looking than I am (yes, I get carded everywhere, and the carders will often look dubiously at me, doubting the validity of my license), but the thought of getting older is still as exciting to me as it was when I was a pre-teen. Every year, I’m gaining things, learning things, growing, becoming more and more myself. I’m okay with the wrinkles. I’m okay with the grey hair. I even look forward to being a crazy old cat lady, hollering at kids to get off my lawn. So, birthdays for me, are a bit of a funny conundrum. I’m not a huge fan of a me-me-me party (I usually just have a few friends to dinner), but I rather like celebrating the gain, the newness, the growth of the year. So, 2012, my 29th birthday, I asked my darling Susan if she would come with me—if we could get out of town for an adventure. And so we did.
It was only a couple of days away, and not a far drive, but getting out of the city and away from one’s normal life makes such a healthy space for reflecting. We gathered snacks and booze and hit the road, finding a place to stay en-route. A cabin, tucked away into the piney hills, filled with quiet and complete with rope swings and the smell of home. This story is seven months late, it’s true. But we’re more than halfway to the next birthday… so I figured why not stop now and see how much our learnings of last year have impacted this year.
So, we found ourselves in this land of trees and wildness. We explored the grounds, swung on rope swings, twirled around in silly dresses, hid in the trees, shot copious photographs from every direction, and talked for hours beneath the very starriest sky. Sometimes we weren’t talking at all. Just basking in it, being dazzled by the roaring light of the stars.
The next day, we lazily got up and enjoyed that woodsy, raw quality of cabin life. Susan even danced with wild abandon for me, but that will have to be its own blog post soon, because it is a treasure unto itself. We continued to unearth delights at the cabin, and then ventured out to find magic brewing in the mountains and bubbling at the lake. The secrets of wind and wildlife came alive for us, and everything felt vibrant and full of possibility.
I think one of my biggest takeaways, looking back, is that 2012 was a year of learning to be open, and learning to say yes. Thank you, darling Susan for joining me on this day where I reflected on this—recognizing opportunities as something you have to grab a hold of and let pull you into new territory. My obstacled year ended up flowing into the next as a source of power. 2012 was certainly not an easy year for me, though many valuable things took place. It was a year full of extremes—both lows and highs. Challenges and opportunities presented themselves and it wasn’t always easy to recognize either for what it was. But I know so much more, now. I am so much more, now.
So, I’m digging in, 2013. I’m ready. I’ve been on a whole bunch of adventures so far, and I’ve quite a few still waiting up my sleeve. I’m going to keep saying yes. I’m going to keep finding more of the pieces that add up to me, and exploring their assembly. I’m going to keep getting older—and celebrate it, for that matter. I’m excited about being 30. I’m excited about being 29. I’m excited about being. But even more, I’m excited about becoming.