Today is my 25th birthday.. that’s a quarter of my life completed. A quarter of my life filled with memories, both joyous and painful, laughter, tears and love. A time in my life where I learned to get up from stumbles, let go of resentments, forgive those who hurt me and forgive myself for hurting others. It’s a time in my life where I’ve had to learn to revel in the ambiguity of the unknown. Today is also the day that I am traveling to the Netherlands to celebrate my mothers’ upcoming marriage to someone who makes her so very happy and see my uncles, both of whom I haven’t seen in seven years. This birthday, while I may not look any different, is a time of reflection.
I had a stranger come up to me the other day at WAWA because she wanted to buy me a 16 oz. cup of coffee. Why? Because that day was “buy a stranger coffee day” according to her daughters’ calendar. That day stuck with me. What does it mean to be “happy?” What does it mean to show “kindness?” Instead of writing a long post, I’d rather share special memories of people whom have shown me kindness and happiness both abroad and at home in the past year.
I’m lucky enough to be able to have the means to travel when others can’t. I’m grateful to have been able to receive an education when so many are unable to. I’m thankful to have been able to fulfill my dream of joining the Peace Corps and for having people in my life who understood why I needed to go. I’m lucky to be 25 and healthy, when so many people abroad are dying at such young ages. I’m grateful to have been given the chance of choosing whether to have children or postponing. I’m thankful for the books that are going to help me during my masters. But most importantly, I’m positively grateful to be given the chance to figure shit out. Here’s to the next 25.