I hate birthdays. Actually I only hate my birthday and, if given the opportunity, wouldn’t bother celebrating it. (Un)fortunately and without fail, my family and friends actively push me to celebrate in some way every single year. Apart from the obvious terrifying fact that every birthday indicates the too-quick passing of time (and aging…yikes), I’m also an incredibly shy person at heart and hate having too much attention on me. I mean, people singing ‘Happy Birthday’ to me leads to blushing and some secret anxiety. I’m fine with this for the most part as long as the celebration is simple and includes minimal attention on me, and this year was no exception. This time around it was my mom who started pressuring me to celebrate the quarter-century milestone. I can’t deny that 25 is kind of a big deal, so I succumbed to her pleads.
You know what they say – mom is always right! I invited my closest friends to join my family and I in celebrating over a lovely dinner at home back in early August (I know, this post is over 2 weeks delayed).
Due to limited time and a busy working schedule, my mom and I opted to purchase some pre-prepped food items from Whole Foods. My mom also cooked up some steaks (covered in cheeeeeese), baked salmon, and roasted potatoes for our dinner menu.
The food was fantastic and the company even better. The night topped off with some raspberry-filled cake from Whole Foods:
It’s still hard to believe that I turned 25 years old.
Looking back, I remember being 19 years old and thinking how old 25 year-olds were. In my mind they were basically adults! I equated them to my parents (because all adults are still adults regardless of age, right?).
Now, as I sit here and type up these quarter-aged musings of mine, I realize that I am most definitely nowhere near where I thought I would be based on predictions from 5 – 10 years ago. Only a few years back I saw myself as a graduate with my master’s degree in Structural Engineering from a top tier university. Had I followed that track, I would only now be starting my career as a civil engineer. Reality: I’m not even an engineer anymore!
And don’t even get me started about my predictions on personal life – back in high school I expected to be married with a baby on the way at this time! The truth is, I still feel 18 at heart, and I probably still act like one too…
Oh how differently things turned out. I’m single, living in Manhattan, working in a non-engineering field, and with no Master’s degree in sight. But it’s ok! I’m ready to mingle, loving life in New York, enjoying my job, and still planning on attending graduate school. Just because the timeline didn’t fit into my “plan” doesn’t mean that what was important to me isn’t any longer.
Here’s the thing though – it’s ok. I am totally fine and happy with where I am at this point in my life. I’m blessed with the most incredible family, amazing friends, and marvelous opportunities that have come my way. Heck, I freaking live in Manhattan! What was once a dream is now a reality. It’s a beautiful thing and I’m grateful for all my blessings daily.
Despite all my whining and complaining about this coming of age, I have to confess that my instinct is telling me that this is going to be an incredible year. I feel sexy, confident, determined, and absolutely unstoppable. The world is my oyster and I get butterflies just thinking about what’s in store for me in the days/weeks/months/years to come.
Thank you to my parents and sister who have been there for me during the best and worst of times over the past 25 years. I wouldn’t have made it to this age without you! And thank you to all my friends who stuck by my side, here’s to another 25+ years of friendship! How did I get so lucky?