Monday, January 25, 2016

2016 ~The Golden Year

The 29th of last month was not only my Golden Birthday, but also marked the start of the last year "in my twenties".  I had been talking about my golden birthday for quite some time. Thinking of it as the epitome of birthdays. I was old enough to afford nice things and have a perfectly curated group of authentic friends, but young enough to still have fun. I wanted it to the 'anti-thirty' and next year we could forget birthday's even exist.

The scale of my vision was rapidly diminished in July. For 1, I was laid off and decided to move to Chicago. I had to switch my focus from vacation planning to life planning. Also one of my girlfriends from college found out she was pregnant and would be due the first week of January. There was no way we could plan something without her, let alone potentially miss the birth of the first, in our group of friends, baby.

Overwhelmed for many reasons, I left it in the hands of my friends. I have to say it was absolutely. perfect. Chicago had just had a winter storm plow through and despite the BF being stuck at the airport across the country having several flights cancelled, my 2 out-of-town girlfriends made a safe trek to the city. I was able to meet one of them, N, for brunch and girl talk then we headed over the K's. We were originally just going to meet for manicures a little later in the afternoon, but decided to head over early. We spent most of the afternoon on the couch, in our sweatpants, where we belong. Catching up, laughing and talking about things like birthing strategies and homeowners insurance {who are we right now?} We pried ourselves off the couch for a few hours to get manicures, but booked it back home when they were done. K had put together a beautiful cheese tray (that only half of us could enjoy) and her famous gauc for us to munch as we got all gussied up for drinks and dinner.

Before we headed out the door the surprised me with the gorgeous, super sparkly cake. We had cocktails at a modern speakeasy The Violet Hour, it reminded me a lot of Bourbon and Branch in SF. Then went to dinner at a new restaurant, The Bedford, that was built in a bank vault. The walls were lined with {gold} glimmering safe deposit boxes. The food was delicious and just as we were finishing dinner the BF made his heroic arrival after taking every mode of transportation invented to get there. Literally.  We topped it off with the cake that was brought in, glowing with candles.

It was honestly too much to ask for and even better than laying on a beach in Mexico as I had envisioned a year earlier. A really solid way to wrap up 2015 with a perfect, gold glittering bow. The simpleness of hanging out, talking, getting dressed up and sharing a meal with friends who I have always considered to be my 'home' couldn't have made it any better. I spent a lot of my time in California feeling restless and anxious. It was so good to just be. Enjoy the things that matter the most and reinforcing my biggest realization of 2015, that 'I'm okay.' Things are how there supposed to be and the most graceful (and least exhausting) way is to take it as it all is.

When I started this post about a month ago, I wanted it to be a list of goals for this year. I didn't make any resolutions because there isn't anything specifically I wanted to work on or change, that put a bit of a limit on my list of goals. After that my mind immediately jumped to that list of things everyone wants to accomplish by the time they're 30, since I have 1 year left.  Then, when I thought about it, I've traveled. I've splurged. I partied. I've had my idealized 'dream job'. I've found my actual dream job. I've loved. I've had my heartbroken. I've pushed myself. I've challenged myself. I didn't know what was left to put on the list. Not to say that I've done it all, by any means. I just can't think of anything new right now.  Then I realized, like I just said, that it finally feels good to just be 'okay'. To NOT be constantly searching, soothing, achieving or discovering. It's anxiety inducing and exhausting. My biggest accomplishment of 2015 was getting to that point and learning, that no matter how hard I wanted to be there before, I had to go through everything I did to really get there. Maybe I should just start enjoying that? I just finished reading the article on Ms. Witherspoon in February's Harper's Bazaar where she describes her motivation for starting her production company and clothing line. She had all this nervous, type-A driven energy that she didn't know what to do with and now, with maturity she's learning how to put it to use.  I don't necessarily think I'm quite at the stage of knowing what to do with it, but I am learning to be okay with it and put it to use.
"In my 20s I was scared of everything. I didn't know what my career was. I didn't know why people liked my movies. I was wary of interacting with people....I was scared. Really scared. Now I feel like a different person. I'm much more open now. It's a great thing getting older. You are who you are; you say what you mean."
This year I want to embrace that so much more, relax into it and, hopefully, make it my own.


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