On Sunday I turned 26 years old. I had an ice cream cake from DQ and did groceries. I didn't do anything special or get anything special because that's the way I like it. I've never been into birthdays at all, I really don't understand people who feel like their birthday is cause for something big or special, or who get annoyed that they have to work "on their birthday!" like it's a big deal, it's just the day you were born, you really had nothing to do with it and everyone has one, so it's just a marker in your life, that's all. We never really made a big deal of birthdays in my family, so maybe that's why, but I'm perfectly fine with it, I don't need anything special on March 22nd, I'm good, thanks.
I'm also not a big opponent to aging. I'm enjoying my 20s quite a bit and I would not go back to being 20, 21, or even 24 again (and no friggin' way would I go back to being a teenager! I just look back at that time and laugh at my foolishness for the most part.) Every year is getting better and better and while I'm freaking out mildly about the signs of aging (gaining weight, age spots, etc), overall I'm very pleased that I'm getting older, because my life keeps getting better and better. Do I sometimes wish for situations or events from my younger days? Of course, but I wouldn't trade it for what I have now. Now, ask me again when I'm 28 how I feel and I might change my mind (28 is my scary number), but for now I look forward to getting older.
So, because I'm 26, let's see if I can come up with 26 random thoughts on my life at this age:
1. In some aspects, I'm not where I thought I would be at 26. Ever since I was young I knew I wanted to have kids early. The plan had always been to have them shortly after University (and shortly after getting married), so probably by age 24 or so. So I'm now 2 years behind my plan and it annoys me to no end.
2. In other aspects, I am exactly where I thought I would be at 26. I'm married and have been for 2.5 years, which follows closely to my original plan of marrying right after University (so around 22...I was 23.) I also got out of University at the right time, but whether it was worth it or not is still heavily up for debate...
3. As far as my career goes, I'm nowhere near where I thought I would be. When I got out of University I didn't really know where I wanted to work except "in government." My translation plans had been shot out of the window and I stumbled around for about 1-2 years working in call centers and whatever, and the only reason I am where I am is because I fell into it completely at random. Do I like my job? Some part of it yes. Does it drive me crazy sometimes? Of course, more and more. Do I want to stay here? No, no I do not. Though I'm thankful for the opportunities and skills/experience this job has given me I hope to leave within the next few years, it's time to move on. To what though, I have no idea...
4. At this stage in the game all I really want to do is be a mama.
5. One thing that happened as I aged was that I realized where I wanted to be. When I was younger I wanted to get as far away from home as I could, not because of my family or friends or anything, but because I wanted to explore and see what was out there; I needed a change. While I did do a tiny little bit of that, I realized as time went along that I really missed home (Sussex) and felt like that's where I wanted to settle down, where I could be happy. It caught me completely by surprise but I've never been more sure of a decision like this ever, so we're working hard to get back there as soon as possible. Of course once I get there I will go stir crazy, but I'm hoping that that's one aspect of my youth that will slowly go away.
6. I feel like sometimes I act too old for my age. I'm too "serious", and am constantly thinking I have to be "grown up" now. Sometimes I wish I could let that go and be like most 26 year olds.
7. I'm very proud to say that I am married to a wonderful man and do not regret for one second my decision to get married "young" (if you think 23 is young to be married, I don't.) i love being married and wouldn't want it any other way. (I'm also marvelously surprised at the type of person I ended up with, it's not what I would have imagined at all but exactly what I needed.)
8. The older I get the more afraid I am of certain things, taking chances and being alone mostly.
9. The older I get the less shy I am becoming. I'm not afraid to talk to people, ask for things, call people out on their shit and generally am more assertive. My job has helped me alot with that and I'm glad that it has because with more responsibility comes the need to be more assertive with your life. Sometimes I fear that I am becoming too assertive though, aggressive or bitchy almost...I'm also becoming more self-depraceting as time goes on, I'm not sure why...
10. I'm definitely getting set in my ways, like an old lady, haha. Fold the towels this way, not that way, that kind of thing.
11. I have very few really close friends, but that has been the case most of my life. I work hard to keep these friendships going, but sometimes I let them slide and feel bad about it.
12. I'm surprised at how much money we have. It was never really something I strove for when I went into the working world, but I must admit that I am glad that we are now finally comfortable financially. If we never had any more I would be happy.
13. I'm slowly growing artistically, and this is really the only area in my life where I feel like I can be "young" about my life and my dreams, I'm not sure why. It's very liberating though.
14. I have no travelled nearly as much as I had hoped/wanted/expected at this point in my life.
15. I want to be more domestic. I'm sad to say that at 26 I can barely cook and don't know how to make bread or a pie. Or sew or knit. Or how to make apple sauce and pickles. I want to learn these thing soon.
16. Wildest dream: To quit my job and work from home as a part-time photographer/crafter and full-time mom.
And 10 goals for my 26th year of life:
17. Get pregnant
18. Sew a blanket
19. Save up for a house
20. Use paint more in my scrapping
21. Start a real journal
22. Go on a trip with Dan
23. Learn to cook/bake more
24. Plant lots of flowers and maybe grow an herb garden
25. Learn to take better pictures; have a few more semi-real photoshoots
26. Laugh more and have more fun
Sorry this is so text heavy, I hope to have some pretties to show later (a few of my 52Qs and perhaps another layout.)
Have a good week!
(137 days 'til Italy!!)