Tonight I am closing the books on my twenties. I am skimming through the worn & tattered pages that have already been written & turned & read a million times over. I am reflecting. I am remembering. I am cherishing. I am sifting through each & every year; what it meant, what it brought. Some of the years I don't want to turn the page on. I want to sit quietly & get lost forever right there in their moments--like year 28-- when the universe shifted & I became a momma. How my heart was awakened to a love that rocked me to the core & how I have been forever changed because of it. Or year 23, when I anxiously walked down that aisle to meet my handsome groom at the end of it, about to embark on a journey of building the life we had been dreaming of. These are the years I could re-live over & over again. The happiest of happy.
Then there are years that I can barely stand the thought of facing again. Hard years. Years that brought me to my knees. Ones carrying deep heartache, tears, & pain. It's those years that I want to turn the pages on quickly, pretending they're not there. But instead I keep turning, keep reflecting. I remind myself that even though they aren't the pretty years, the ones I want to showcase to the world, they are still my years. The intricate pages that make up the life I've had thus far. They are the pieces of MY life. They are years that have molded me, grown me, & impacted me in such a way that I am who I am because of them. There is beauty to be found in those years as well.
Tonight I say goodbye to my twenties. I say thank you for the fun, for the energy, for the youthfulness that those years brought with them. I gaze at the many life changing events that have shaped & blessed my life, & I can't help but smile through some grateful tears.
As I close up the book on my twenties, & nestle it snugly upon the shelf, giving it one last glance & farewell smile... I carefully slide out a different one...
This book is brand spankin' new. It has never been opened before, never even been touched. It's pages are crisp & clean, & don't turn as loosely as the book I held in my hands just moments ago. As I cautiously pick it up & thumb through it's pure white pages, the scent of fresh paper breezes up into my face. These pages are blank. They haven't been written on yet. These pages need an author to come & write their story upon them. They are waiting eagerly for life to come & fill them up. These pages await the joys & triumphs; even fears & sorrows that will be scribbled across them.
These pages are mine. They belong to me, & me alone. They are the years I believe whole heartedly will be the best years of my life. The ones I will reflect on one day & yearn to have back. The years that I become more settled, more grounded, more "me". The years that I will stand in who I am, & make no apologies to this world that tells me it looks strange & different. The years that I will sink into my own skin & get all comfy cozy in it. I hope during these years to let some "stuff" go, to give forgiveness more freely. I hope to grow, to stretch, to become stronger & wiser during these years that lay before me. There are dreams & goals & hopes & wishes that I have for the years that are awaiting me, & I anticipate that they will blow all of my expectations straight outta the water! Will there be some heartache? No doubt. There will be years I want to grasp & hold onto forever, & ones that I wouldn't mind if the door hit on the way out. That's just the way life goes. But even in those tough years, there will still be beauty to be found between the lines.
I'm going to embrace these years. I'm going to savor these years. I'm going to live these years.
I say all of that to say...
why, hello thirties. It is so nice to finally meet you.