I went back this week and read my entries on a blog I use to do with two of my college girlfriends. We started it right after graduating college, wanting to write through what it was like being a 20-something in a strange, scary job market with a shaky economy. I teared up as I went back and read what Mer wrote before she left her job, went to beauty school, and recently landed an incredible job where she now lives in Chicago (she use to live in Orlando, near me...sigh).
I felt sentimental as I read the posts leading up to Alyssa's wedding, which seems like yesterday until I think of the moves she's made, the jobs she's changed, and her beautiful little boy who was a someday dream back then. Man, time has flown and life has changed but we're in such neat places now. A million miles from where we began both as people and in life, it's fun to look back and be grateful for how these four years have unfolded. Grateful for the dreams that are now realities and the new ones that now fill our heads.
I've thought a great deal lately about 'getting ahead'. I am an observer by nature. I am always taking things in and analyzing them later. As I flew home from Kansas City last weekend I made 3 pages of notes about new goals, ideas, and dreams followed by pages upon pages of to do lists that will get me there.
I expect that by the time I ring in the big 2-7 next week I will have a good idea of what I want the next year to look like. I'm growing steadily closer to 30 and I'm anticipating it with no fear. I was miles ahead of where I thought I would be when I hit 25 and if I keep going at this pace, I think I'll be proud of where I am at 30.
Forgive me if that sounds cocky. I in no way think I have my act together. In fact, I realize the more I learn, the more I have left to learn. I've read 78 books this year and added about 300 to the list I want to read as seems to be the theme of my life where knowledge is concerned. I've studied real estate and finances this year only to realize I don't know anything about retirement or investments. I am absolutely a work in process and a lifelong learner at heart.
What I'm celebrating this year as I close another terrific year of my 20s is this - my sacrifices, hard-work, and sheer determination are starting to pay off. I am living the fruits of 16ish years of school labor and 4.5 years at the work force and it feels good. To say very few things in my adult life have turned out as I planned would be an understatement. More than that I haven't turned out the way I thought either. That much I mean in the best possible way. I've experienced my share of growing pains but I have loved the results of that process.
I'm happier, healthier, and more excited that ever. This isn't my official farewell to 26 post, so you can expect that next week. But as I look back on the last few years I'm thankful that I finally feel like I'm 'getting there'.