Friday, April 18, 2014

with one deep breath, and one big step, i move a little bit closer

as you may or may not know, today is (was?) my birthday. i mean, technically there are still a couple of hours left in the eighteenth, but it's not really the day anymore and i'll probably be heading to bed in an hour so i guess the day is over. or something. anyway. last year i turned twenty-five and that felt like a big birthday. i mean, a quarter of a century. that's big. this year i turned twenty-six (obviously) and despite the fact that the only noteworthy thing about this birthday is that it marks the start of a year-long countdown until the day i am an odd numbered age again, it's been hard. i think it might be the first really hard birthday i've had. like, ever.

i've had moments of "oh my god i am (insert age here) shouldn't i have accomplished (insert appropriate milestone or life goal here) by now?" but i have never felt such soul-crushing failure at the approach of a birthday as i did with this one. i was not ready to be twenty-six. because i am essentially stuck in the same place that i was on my birthday last year. only last year it felt like a step up. this feels a little more like having the rest of the ground rise up and leaving the one square i'm standing on right where it is. (i am not going to dwell on this fact any more than that. also, i started writing more than one piece dealing with this, and every image and metaphor i started sounded tired and hackneyed. the whole experience was kind of a metaphor of my life at the moment and that was just meta enough to piss me off.)

anyway. i always write a birthday post. always. whether it is a huge (or brief) recap of the past year or just a little note saying, "i was born on this day and here is what i did," something is written. but i was really thinking of not posting anything today. (fun fact: one of the main reasons there was a post a couple of days ago was so that i could post on my birthday without feeling like it had to be something big and worthwhile after a dry spell. i didn't want to give myself that excuse to not post. i still didn't want to post anything today.) this morning, feeling like i had to write something, i had a post that consisted entirely of one word: ugh. i later added, "let's just not this year." i didn't post it, though. acknowledging the fact that an entire year had passed without me even noticing felt like giving up. maybe if i didn't blog about it, i wouldn't be a year older.

i mentioned in one of my other birthday posts, though, that my birthday always reminds me of the wonderful people i have in my life. my family. my friends. my people that i sometimes forget exist but then come out of the woodwork offering me a smile. and this year was no different. i really am blessed with some amazing people. and by doing nothing but being themselves (and that includes throwing a bratty tantrum when i didn't play minecraft like i said i would) they have given me the (insert appropriate word here because i am tired and can't think of it) i needed to take a breath. to pause and look around. while i still have the taste of failure sitting strong and bitter at the back of my throat, and i still have the vague sense of panic churning in the pit of my stomach, there is also a small ray of hope. or faith. or something. all i know is that i will take a moment really soon and think through everything i have been shoving onto the proverbial back burner all year, and maybe that will help. maybe the thinking will be enough. maybe it will kickstart me into some forward movement. maybe. and at the moment, maybe feels like heaven.

twenty-six will be the year of deep breaths. i am ready.

*For Reasons Unknown - The Killers

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