Today I turn 29 which just feels damn weird. I have no real qualms about the twilight of my 20s but I suspect I’ll go back and forth on that 100 times over the next year. 28 was a grounding year. It was a year of building resilience, being open, and standing up for myself.
On my 28th birthday I woke up and went to work. I had always taken my birthday off but was hording vacation days and it seemed like the responsible thing to do. Dumb. No, never again. I’m a lady of leisure today, responsible only to my whims and pleasures. It’s better this way.
In June, I finally got a permanent position and successfully negotiated a big kid salary thanks to a serious cadre of badass business-minded girlfriends.
In July, I tagged along with Jorge to Mexico. We’ve been buddies for years and it was so fun to meet his extended family and whoop it up at a true Mexican wedding. We headed back to Mexico City for several days to look at murals, consume our body weight in tacos, and watch grown men fight each other in colorful spandex. Exploring the Coyoacan and paying our respects to Trotsky was far and away the highlight of the trip.
I got back from Mexico and went on a bit of a dating binge. It was super fun to meet tons of new people and temporarily live in a whirlwind of messages, happy hours, and new lipstick. Dating taught me an airtight 20 minute prep scheme that I will probably use for the rest of my life. Enthusiasm for Tinder waned right as I was prepping for a family trip to the UK in September so I kissed the summer good-bye and got on a plane to London.
My parents had originally conspired to introduce me and my brother to Europe the summer of 2000. Ha! The best laid plans and all that. We spent a week in London together as a family conquering museums and plays during the day and then breaking off in the evening for some unstructured activity. Mike came with a list of bars and I volunteered as an eager research assistant.
For the second half of our trip, I forged my own path and headed north for a week in Scotland. It was so great to travel alone again. Travel buddies are wonderful but I had missed the quiet solitude of sitting alone on a train, learning a new city the hard way, and doing exactly what I pleased. I split my time between Edinburgh and the Highlands. Edinburgh with its rain, walkable downtown, and great food culture made this Seattlelite feel right at home. The last three days were a tour of northern Scotland and the Isle of Skye. Scotland is achingly, consumingly beautiful. I knew I wanted to return as soon as I arrived. The beauty of the country feels largely untouched and ruggedly wild. The scenery absolutely commands your attention but there’s nowhere you’d rather be looking so it works out perfectly.
I landed back in the US in early October and closed out the last few months of the year with a carousel of concerts, weekend road trips, and a return to cooking at home. These stretches of busy but “normal” is what keeps us moving. Work picked up and then settled back down. We hit a recruiting benchmark, high fived, and committed to doing it again next year.
2015 dawned and promised to be full of friends and community. I kicked it off by heading to Oregon for the weekend to see Sparky. We drank a lot of wine, main lined old episodes of Sex and the City, and admired a lot of very pretty things we cannot afford at Nordstrom. Basically, it was all the best parts of high school all over again and it was wonderful.
I had made a commitment to do a bunch more sailing last summer but totally fell down on the task. Sailing has come back into my life over the last year and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it. Being on the water is a rare sort of relaxation. Everyone is afraid of dropping their phones in the water so they mostly stay packed away and we get to converse with the people around us. My racing skills are definitely rusty but now that I’ve found a bit of a crew I’m pumped to do some small boat sailing this summer and get back into fighting form.
In April, I flew down to Texas to officiate Kristin and Cody’s wedding. What an overwhelming honor to marry one of your best friends to her forever dude. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house but it had precious little to do with the words coming out of my mouth. K & C are just Good People who have built an amazing community all over the country that descended on Cody’s family home to surround them in love. It was a magical day.
Big thanks to everyone that has made this year possible. So many of you provided critical advice on myriad topics that helped me refine my outlook and maintain my sanity. 28 involved a fair amount of personal growth and the hand wringing (and let’s be honest, occasional tears) that go along with that. I could not have done it without you. MWAH.