twenty-four.

Sometimes it’s hard to know where to begin these days when it comes to writing. My life isn’t as easy to compartmentalize since JVC is over, but I had a birthday about a month and a half ago, and here’s a few thoughts on the first few months of being twenty-four.

The thing about having a birthday so close to the beginning of a new year is that I just finished reflecting on the ending of a calendar year, so I’m usually not too inclined to do much thinking about what my birthday means.

But I’ve already made a lot of progress on my goals/resolutions for 2013: I became a Big Sister, visited Boston again, joined a bunch of fitness classes at the gym, and made a few recipes from my ever-growing list. I still need to get a library card, but that will happen soon. Anyway, that’s a to do list, not a resolution.

More broadly, some friends and I have proclaimed this year to be “No Shame 2013”

Take that for what it is, I want this year to be about loving myself, about wearing what I want, when I want to, even if it’s being overdressed, or wandering around in yet another flannel shirt. I will wear red lipstick even when it’s a little bit over the top. I will goto the gym because it’s fun and it makes me feel better about myself and I’m trying to care about my health in the most holistic way.

No shame for my choices, past, present, and future. No shame for who I am. No shame about what I do.

I want to continue this journey of focusing on figuring out what I want and doing what I love.

My dad has been talking to me about knowing what I want since I was a kid, I have a letter saved that he wrote when I was 9 just on this topic. I spent most of high school and college being pretty indecisive about what I wanted. But deep down, I think I’ve always known, it’s just hard to name it and claim it sometimes.

I’ve also really started the process of discernment again. After JVC, my thought process just went something along these lines: find a job in St. Louis so I can move out of my parent’s house. I was fortunate enough to stumble upon a job working for a organization that I believe in doing work I find meaningful, that also gives me paychecks and health insurance and all of that good stuff. I managed to find an apartment and roommates in a neighborhood I love. Settling into all of that has taken some time, but I’m finally there, and now I can begin to really think about the ever present question of “what’s next?”

Those are a lot of big questions that I’m only beginning to sort out, but here’s just a few more concrete things that have summed up these first weeks of being 24:

Tea every morning at work.
Spending too much money at Trader Joe’s.
Tights and boots and pining for spring.
Nights at zumba and yoga classes.
Working too many Saturdays and loving my job all the same.
Spending afternoons with my little sister.
Trying to strike this strange balance between college-JVC-professional life.
Painting my nails a new color every week just because I can.
A new (to me) car.
Bills and budgets and savings.
Boston and birthdays and Mardi Gras and reunions and celebrations with my favorite people.
Lots of brunching.
The longest hair I have EVER had.
Journal entries every night about where I see God in my life.

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