Tomorrow is my birthday! I’ve always been a big birthday person. This year feels a little different (as I’m sure it has for anyone that’s had a birthday in the last four months). I typically celebrate my birthday with the July Jubilee celebration in my hometown; unfortunately it was cancelled this year. This really bummed me out, but instead of letting myself feel sad, I decided to write this post of the things I am most grateful for in my 27th year of life and what I am looking forward to in year 28.
“Gratitude turns what we have into enough.”
Family is very important to me and one of the biggest reasons I lived in my hometown as long as I did. I am beyond grateful to have such a big family that I am so close to. Thankfully, I’ve had a pretty flexible schedule over the past year that has allowed me to make the two hour drive back home to visit them frequently. My family is loving, always there with open arms and of course not afraid to tell me like it is. I appreciate each and every one of them more and more every day.
My Apartment/ Living Alone
Up until this last year I hadn’t ever lived completely alone, whether it was with my family, a significant other or friends, there was always someone else around. I’m very much a “people person” and “social butterfly” so I had assumed I would get lonely if I lived by myself. Something changed in this last year, however. Maybe it’s because I finally love myself to enjoy alone time. I tend to have an avoidance type of relationship with myself. If something were bothering me, I would just keep myself busy enough not to notice it. There have been some hard days in the past couple of months but I’ve learned how to self sooth and push through on my own a bit more, which has given me a stronger sense of independence. I love having my place organized, decorated and cleaned exactly how I like. I have enjoyed doing what I want when I want. But mostly, I have loved getting to know myself on a deeper level.
What a whirlwind year it has been for me when it comes to jobs. I started working when I was 14 and my strong work ethic developed quickly. I enjoy keeping busy and earning my income based on my performance; it motivates me. When I came to Des Moines about a year and a half ago, I started bartending full-time. While I liked getting to build relationships with the customers and didn’t have to sit at a desk, it wasn’t ever a long term plan for me. I moved between jobs a bit searching for something that was a better fit… I have finally found the perfect combination of jobs. I get to teach at multiple places where I feel appreciated and am constantly inspired. I also get to spend my day with two adorable (and very energetic) little kiddos. I get to be silly, play and am constantly moving throughout my day. I wake up each morning excited for the day ahead.
The future brings a lot of unknowns, and for once, I am perfectly okay with that. I tend to try and plan out every aspect of my life. Especially in the last couple of years, I’ve learned… it’s not possible! I have had this very detailed picture of my future in my head and when it didn’t work out, I would get upset. As hard as it has been, I’ve had to let go of that control and live day by day. It has relieved a great deal of my stress! With that, I still enjoy setting goals for myself to give me things to focus on. I’ve already set my personal and professional goals for the calendar year, but beyond that, I have a few things I’d like to do this next year of my life.
- Be kind: Especially right now, we need to show kindness and love to others. I have decided to do (at least) 28 random acts of kindness in the next year. I love hearing people tell stories about how something so little, like having their coffee bought for them, has such a big impact on their day.
- Volunteer: There is nothing I love more than sharing my passion for yoga with others. Not everyone has the access or ability to experience this, so I would like to continue to volunteer my services. I will be looking for ways to do this, but if you have any suggestions, I would gladly welcome them!
- Continuous self improvement: I am very proud of my journey this past year. There were many ups and downs but I always found a way to forge ahead. I have loved getting to know myself and figure out who I really am recently, and look forward to continuing down this path.