i shared with my counselor this week that my birthday was approaching (it was thursday) and that i'd be getting another year older. i rambled on, sharing my feelings of inadequacy over what i hadn't accomplished or hadn't done or who i hadn't yet become. after all, this was to be the last year of my 20's - shouldn't i have at least gotten something done at this point in my life?
my counselor looked at me and said something along the lines of, "instead of saying older, why don't you start saying wiser? after all, every new year brings another level of wisdom to our life."
(we're working on positive associations and messaging in our sessions, if you couldn't tell)
but she's right. i have accumulated wisdom with each passing year (some more than others) and it's a pretty empowering thought to imagine all that wisdom stored in my brain and all the wisdom that is yet to come. for reference, i'm picturing my wisdom being kept safe in the cave of wonders from aladdin.
i had been a little consumed with the idea of having a "before i turn 30 bucket list" - all these things i just had to get done in the upcoming year otherwise my 20's would surely be a waste. but as my 29th birthday got closer and closer, i found myself forcing ideas and forcing things i wanted to do just to put them on a "now or never" bucket list. forcing things on a list prompted lots of questions from my wisdom bank: why would running my first marathon before 30 be any better than running it when i'm actually 30 or even older? would perfecting the bloody mary recipe be more meaningful now compared to four years from now?
turns out, i didn't have any legitimate reasons to do any of these things before i turn 30 other than it's what i thought i should do or was supposed to do.
and just like that, as i sipped my free birthday latte from starbucks on thursday, my first new wisdom to add to my cave of wonders was revealed to me on my 29th birthday. i'm letting go of this "before 30 bucket list" and i'm looking forward to a lifetime of being able to cross things off my list of to do's when it's their rightful time. savoring (and saving) the joy that each one of these things will bring will be much more satisfying than the stress and pressure to force them all into one year.
so here's to turning 29; another year wiser, another year with blank pages to write in the story of my life and the things i will do as they come to me in their rightful time.