Thursday, September 27, 2012

To my 20s

Originally stolen from this friend here:

Dear 20s,

Wow! I can't believe I'm writing this letter and sending you off on a fare-thee-well of your own.  It's been amazing to look back and remember the love, laughter, sadness, and life that you gave to me.  When I endured my teen years, I think I can say I did some growing but it was mostly physical and I didn't quite know who I was or who I wanted to be so mostly I thrived in my teens because I had loving arms around me to guide me through those years.

But you, my 20s, my wonderful, beautiful 20s.  You were the first years that I really ventured out and made decisions for myself.  You were full and abundant and the perfect gift from the perfect One who knew I would need all the ups and downs you had to offer.

I learned so much about myself.  I learned that guys make good friends but its better to have girls be your best friend.  I learned that I enjoy life more when I am sharing it with someone~ preferably over a cup of something warm and delicious.  I learned that passion for a place or people is a good thing but passion for Christ no matter where you are is even better!  I learned that I love ice cream more than any other food on this planet and if I could eat it by the gallon tub, I would with no shame!  I learned that mountains are hard to climb but they are always worth the view at the top. Always.  I learned that sometimes friends and family push you but that's because they love you, believe in you, and are with you.  I learned that sometimes friends come and go in and out of your life for seasons at a time but that doesn't mean I love them or they me any less.

I learned to love. I learned loss.  I learned not to throw myself into just any old relationship but to wait for a man to pursue. And he did.  I learned that love is scary but it's good.  I learned that introverts still like people, they just express their love for people differently.  I learned to take criticism and to be hurt but to love that person who was doing their best.

I learned that I'll probably always prefer jeans and my Iowa sweats from freshmen year and that's okay. I learned that carbs are bad, no wait, they're good. No wait, they're bad. No wait, they're good. No, wait... I learned that everything we eat is made from corn and that dolphins are being tortured in other parts of the world.  I learned that I don't really like documentaries because I end up caring too much about things I'm not sure I want to "stake my flag on the hillside" for. I learned what I do want to stake my flag in and how to let others have their own hillsides.  I learned to love them anyway cause they love me anyway!

I learned to live in another country.  I learned how to take embarrassment and shake it from my shoulders.  I learned that smiling often communicates more than words. I learned that you can love people like family even when they're not technically family.  I learned to cook Korean.  I learned discomfort. I learned that friendships take work and need to be occasionally "brought into the light" to be checked up on.  I learned to celebrate other's successes and be excited for the things that you wish you had yourself.  I learned to snowboard!

I learned to feel lonely.  I learned that I hate death and all that it entails.  I learned that family is important to me and the passing on of what we have with each other to those who come after us.  I learned I am blessed to be a blessing.  I learned that I love sitting around kitchen tables sharing stories and memories.  I learned I love to bake.  I learned that when you're 20 you think you have all the time in the world and nothing bad will ever happen.  But then something happens and you realize, sadly, that life is fleeting.  I learned though, that sadness is not the end.  That depression happens but so does joy!  I learned to be depressed and to be scared but not to give up.

I learned that at the first sound of someone's voice you could immediately feel both love & fear.  I learned that some women are gifted with natural mothering instincts and some are grown into their mothering, neither one is better or worse and your baby (babies) won't know that you cried for the first six months of their lives.  Probably when they're old enough to understand that, they'll love you so much they won't care except that you were sad.

I learned that I am often times loud, I say the wrong thing, and I laugh at my own jokes but I'm comfortable with that, because that is who I am and I happen to like who I am.  I don't think I could have said that at 20 but it's a new thing God is doing and I like it.

Oh, 20s. I'm such a sap that when I woke up yesterday and knew it was my last day in my 20s, I felt sad.  Sad to be leaving you.  You've been better to me than a friend.  You've been teacher, healer, giver, and life to me.  I couldn't imagine life without my 20s.

And guess what? I'm not leaving you behind. You happen to be coming along with me as I start romancing my 30s.  I hope you'll be a good friend to my 30s and remind my 30s not to let me be too serious about things.  Growing up is good for some people but for me & you, 20s, we gotta stay young, wild and free.  None of this settling down for too long, okay? You tell my 30s that we like having adventures!

So long for now 20s. Thanks for all the memories!

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