This is 24: Happy birthday to me

24 years old. Lemon yellow blackberry cake birthday

I’m 24 years old, and I have a single white hair at my temple that I refuse to pluck out.

I’m fascinated by it. If I could put it under a microscope, I would. It’s like a fragment of age, a snapshot in time. It signifies a turning point, as my body begins to change in new and different ways.  The hair is so slight, a gossamer thread. You almost wouldn’t notice it stark white like a cobweb against mahogany.

But it’s visible enough that I can see it, as I straighten bangs or curl eyelashes. “Hello, old friend. You’ve changed since last we met.”

Last night, I went out drinking. I was in bed by midnight, but still woke up with a hangover and a pain in my shoulder blade. I’d slept on my shoulder wrong. That all-too definitive sign of age, when even sleep isn’t a 100% restful, eventless activity.

I’m OK with aging, though. I know that’s easy to say, because hello, I’m only just scampering into my mid-20s. But I am. I like getting older. I like feeling just a little more confident, a little more capable.

So, to focus on the positive of aging, I’m setting my intentions for 24. Here are my goals for the next year.

  • Read. I’ve read 38 books in 2017 as of now, and I want to continue to dedicate this space for reading in my life. It gives me such joy to savour every morning with a cup of tea and a good book. I’m returning to an old love of my life by carving out time for literature, and it feels so right.
  • Write. I’ve joined a Writers’ Club, where I’m pushing my limits, flexing my abilities as a writer. I’m even trying to write poetry now! It’s difficult and shaky and involves lots of stumbles, but it’s keeping my mind and pencils sharper. That’s a wonderful thing.
  • Blog. This website has been a passion project of mine for about two years. At times it’s been a partnership, but now it’s a solo endeavour. The site’s likely never going to be a source of revenue, but I want to do something with it. So, I’m unearthing the blog, shaking it off, dusting and polishing to a gleam. It’s going to be truer to myself, whatever form that takes.
  • Box. I’ve been going to Muay Thai classes for about 10 months, with my darling friend Leeanne. We adore going to the classes at Lions MMA together. We punch, we kick, we fall and falter. We continue to push. It’s not always a comfortable experience. Combat sports are scary. They’re wholly outside my comfort zone. I’m not as good as I want to be, and that’s a lesson in humility. And yet, it makes me feel powerful and empowered. I’m stronger. I’m learning. I’m getting there.
  • Love. I’m not always as thoughtful as I want to be. I don’t dedicate the time I should to family and friends, and I want to get better at that. I am so grateful for all of the love in my life, and I want to make more of an effort in returning it.

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