Wednesday, January 16, 2008

The Wonder Years

I'm 23 years old today. Okay actually I've been 23 for two days, but who is counting?

I'm wondering how it's possible to feel as old and as young as I do at the same time. Old because I have graduated college and have entered the working world, and young because my entire adult life is just beginning.

Last year on my birthday I was still at home for Christmas break, snowed in and unable to leave home (literally) because the weather was so icey. It was the Sunday before MLK, and I walked in the snow and ice to my friend MK's house for a tea party. Before my parents moved, I lived in a neighborhood with several of my close friends within walking-distance.

I remember the next day meeting up with my roommate KW and having the most nerve-racking driving experience of my life trying to get back to College Station. You never realize how many bridges and overpasses you cross on a three and a half hour drive until you're praying for your life over EACH and EVERY one of them.

File that under "things I never told my parents".

I spent Monday wishing and hoping that we would get a few snow flurries, so that I could sing the rendition I had already come up with of "I'm dreaming of a white birthday". It didn't happen, or if it did, I was already asleep. I'm 23 now people! My bedtime peaked on or surrounding my 19th birthday, when I was a freshman in college and I survived on croissant sandwiches, my daily dose of Days Of Our Lives and five or six hours of sleep a night.

Our friend RM is back in town for job training- he blew into town in his typical outlaw-fashion, and took AV, KR and I out to dinner at a quaint, dimly-lit little Italian place about 20 blocks up from us.

AV and KR made me vanilla-on-vanilla cupcakes with pink and light purple frosting for the occasion. I also hauled a huge box home from work that my Mom had mailed me the other day- so we were all fixed up with little kid sunglasses, Mardi Gras beads, huge plastic cocktail rings and Happy Birthday headbands. Barbie herself could not have dreamed up a better party. RM left to go back to his hotel at 10:30 and we all practically collapsed from exhaustion.

My friend MC from work has a birthday tomorrow, and so last night we and our other assistant friends all went out for a joint birthday happy hour at a bar near our office. It was nice to get to hang out, relax and enjoy a drink without the usual constraints of the lunch hour.

I was asked for 23 pieces of wisdom the other night by RM- and I gave him a few “Rome wasn’t built in a day, dance like no one is watching, if it’s not broken then don’t fix it” clich├ęs… and not because I felt like being smart, or because I’m actually incredibly witty, but because I kind of realized that I didn’t have anything to say.

I mentioned the goal-setting/goal-reaching thing a few posts ago- that with the combination of my rapid aging has gotten me thinking. I feel like I accomplished what I set out to do as a 22-year-old, and I hope to do the same this year.

23 obviously worked some magic for Michael Jordan.

While I’m figuring out what exactly my special somethings for 23 will be, I can certainly say that I am very loved, and Monday reminded me of that. So thanks to everyone who called, e-mailed, text-ed, IMed and Facebook-ed me to wish me well. And thanks for reading this; because that’s the best birthday gift I could ask for.

"I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of starts makes me dream."
- Vincent Van Gogh

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