Well hello, there, 28. You’re three or so hours away on Hawai‘i time, but I’ve had some red wine and a delicious calzone, so let’s do this right now.
Normally, I come into my birthday very reflective. Last year, I wrote about wanting to accept things as they are. I like to think I did that.
This year, as I move into the last few years of my twenties, I realize that… I’m empty. Not in a bad way– October is the first full, meaty month of fall. The time of harvest, reaping the benefits of what was sown in hot summer months. My birth month is one of patience, balance, and hard work. The pregnant pause of the year. It’s not the beginning of fall, nor is it the holiday season. That’s okay. I like living in the pauses.
I normally lament how rushed and tired I feel around my birthday, but this year, I am choosing to celebrate it. I see now that my exhaustion, my emptiness, isn’t a sign of lacking. This year, and hopefully from now on, it is a sign of preparation for the new. We cannot fill a cup that is already full.
I come to a new year of life completely spent: I have tried to give my words, my voice, my work to my classroom and loved ones. I have tried to ensure that I don’t refuse new lessons because I am so full of old ones that may no longer serve me. Instead of feeling full and satisfied, I quite like the idea of coming into a new year on earth empty and open: there is a hunger in my belly that is still not satisfied. I am excited to spend another year filling it again.
So, 28. Here I am. I am blessed with amazing family, friends, partnership. I understand now, more than ever, what the work feels like (I am always adapting to what it looks like). I am eager to see what comes next.
I’m moving away from making highfalutin plans for 28. Instead, I am excited to spend this year working, listening, and reveling in the joy and stability my life, love, and work has brought me thus far. If I learned anything this year, it’s that I am best served by reading my life like the waves: there are times to savor the momentary calm, wait within pause as a set comes in, and there are times to ride the waves into something marvelous.
Here’s to reading the ocean. Here’s to trusting my gut. Here’s to 28.
PS: I am still blogging over at EdWeek. I hope you come and check it out. 🙂