Four more days. It’s the end of an era. The end of an entire DECADE. And while there is still so much I want to accomplish, I’m feeling pretty good about where I’m at right now.
The difference between now and 10 years ago is huge.
A decade ago, I was beginning my second year of college. That semester, I changed my major to theater. I was dating an actor at the time, and I thought that could be my future. I was still living with my freshman roommate, in a bright orange-and-green inspired dorm room. We’d finally gotten a sweet corner room — the biggest in the building. I was eating freeze pops like crazy. I was watching my weight (and running on the gym treadmill SEVERAL times away). I think I was even doing Weight Watchers. I was working for the school newspaper, which I’d eventually quit, since I spent all my time there. That year, I applied to a grant and found myself in England the following summer, a paid study abroad. I remember at the time feeling like all of this was so huge. I was changing, morphing and adapting each day.
Now it is 10 years later. I’ve somehow landed a dream job in New Jersey — a state I never thought I’d call home. I’m pursuing a career in what I picked originally: writing. I am dating another writer (funny how that works) who has become my best friend (and editor) I’m still living in bright residence — though this time it’s orange and blue. My freshman roommate is still my best friend. I swapped freeze pops for fruit bars. Fitness has taken over me, especially in the last year. I’ve found so much joy through running health groups and helping others reach their goals. I eat clean. I don’t count points. I’m not writing for a paper, but I am running a literary journal with two friends. And I just got back from an all-paid trip (by me, in cash) to northern California. At this point, none of this feels very huge. But maybe it should? I continue to change, morph and adapt each day. And I’ve done quite a bit of living in three short decades.
It’s funny the memories conjured up by relieving the past 10 years. And it’s ironic to see that, in many ways, I am doing the very same things I was doing at 20 — just a bit different. It’s in that adaptation where I find the real changes have taken root. At 20, I was nervous and anxious and wasn’t ever quite confident in myself. Today, I face those same fears and struggles. I have to actively work hard to not fret or feel guilty or think negative thoughts. But that is the key — working actively. Because of this, such feelings rarely overtake me. They are merely thoughts that pass through as I’m going through my day. I am no longer plagued by crippling anxiety that lasts for days. In many ways, this makes me feel like adulthood isn’t that bad.
I am ready for the next decade. I anticipate that it may be the most life-changing decade to date. The 20s was up and down. I look forward to riding a more even-keel wave in the 30s.
Here’s to 30!