Friday, February 8, 2013

The Last Week of 25

Next Thursday is my birthday! Yay!!

I've been reflecting on the past year, and thinking about my last week as a 25-year-old woman.  Growing up, I thought 25 would be the age where I "had it all."  And at five to ten years old, "all" meant a car, a house, a husband, some kids, and a job. I was not surprised when last year, I entered the 25th year, and I was two for five.  Actually, I'll still be two for five come next Thursday.  The wedding's not until June, and buying a house? HA!  Right.

Anyways, I was a naive little girl.  Houses require savings.  Husbands require years of investment.  And kids require a special quality that I don't happen to possess right now.  Which brings me to my pre-birthday thoughts, leaving 25 and moving on to 26.

  • At almost 26, I am without a doubt, still very selfish. And I still very much value my sleep and being able to do just about anything I want to whenever I want to. So, year 26 probably won't be the year for children if I have anything to say about it.
  • I've been at my job for almost four years now. Wow! That's a long time, to me.  I was hired as soon as I graduated college and was very thankful to be hired, in pretty much my dream job...at the time.  I love working where I work, and there are so many people who have been there for 20, 30 years or so.  I guess I just wonder if I have the desire to be a lifer there like everyone else. Year 26 might be the year to think about trying something new.
  • I'm no longer as passionate about going to graduate school as I was at say, 24.  I still want to go, but I guess just not right now.  Plus, sh*t happens. Gotta get my new kidney first :/ I can't say 26 will be the year I finally apply, and I'm OK with that.
  • I love living in my apartment  and living the apartment lifestyle. And I love living close to the city and near reliable public transportation.  I don't plan on moving before age 27.
  • I've learned my drinking limit and FINALLY learned to stick to it.  It's two drinks. And I'm sooo happy that it is!  I still like going out and having a good time but I spend next to nothing on alcohol now. Savings!! And I love being the designated driver because that means I get to decide when we leave ;)
  • I'm trying to remember if I felt differently about my family at 24 going on 25 than I do now.  Nope! I still really, really like/love them and I still love going to visit them every weekend.
  • New development: at 25 going on 26, I'm ,90 percent over Facebook.  Yeah, crazy right?  I'm not going to cancel Facebook (yet) and make a big deal about it.  But I did kind of have this revelation one day of just...why?  Why am I on Facebook? None of my real friends even communicate with me on Facebook anymore.  I barely use the social networking site, and I really don't miss it.  Which surprised me considering the fact that I acted Facebook-addicted from time to time. But who hasn't, you know?
  • This happened sometime in October, but I've finally come to terms with the fact that I'm not always going to A) be invited to, or B) feel like participating in every event that my single friends have.  When Ben and I first moved in together, we felt like we weren't getting invited to as many outings with our groups of friends. It hurt that our social lives had changed because we became cohabitators.  But after talking to some "experts" about this we realized that this is a normal shift in dynamic.  And after all, we're not exactly super interested in picking up members of the opposite sex anymore.  If anything, I've learned that we might need to invest in some more "couple friends" who live nearby so that we can do couply things from time to time. 
  • No matter how many friends I may have, how great my family is,  or how wonderful my fiance is, at nearly 26 I've realized that the relationship I have with God is the most important relationship I have.
  • At almost 26, I can say that I don't believe there is a rhyme or a reason for why Ben and I have been able to stay together this long.  Over the past 8 years, I've heard all the explanations for how things are supposed to go.  I've heard that you can't marry someone you met in high school.  You can't marry someone you started dating at 18.  A former boss told me that you shouldn't get married in your 20s because you have to do a lot of stuff.  I've heard you shouldn't live with someone before marriage. I've heard that you have to live with someone for at least five years before getting married or it's not going to work out. When I was an intern, a colleague of mine thought it might be OK for her to tell me that I was never going to marry Ben because we'd been dating too long.  I've been told a lot of stuff about what brings a relationship to marriage, and Ben and I have been asked several times about the secret to a teenage relationship that started the summer after prom lasting this long without it looking like we're just settling for each other. And there isn't a secret or an explanation.  What we have, is what we have.  And you know what? It took me years to be OK with this, for the reasons I named above. I almost bought into the theory of what works for one person and one relationship, will work for mine. People are right, Ben and I had a lot of growing up to do in our teenage years and early, early 20s.  And guess what--we STILL have a lot of growing up to do!  But I suppose the real answer, if there is one, to lasting this long is that we made a commitment at some point  to do our growing up together because we just really, really like each other. After all these years, filled with ups and downs, we still really like each other. And this is what works for us. And we're happy.  My parents dated for six months before getting married. And they're still married. And if they'd bought into the opinions and theories of others, I probably wouldn't even be here!
So yeah...one more week of 25!  And this post was really long! I apologize, but to be honest, it's been a really long year.  OH, and one more thing: I suppose 26 will be the year that I start living with another person's kidney inside of me! This is weird, gross, scary and exciting.