Hello 30, Let’s Be Friends

Well, the “dreaded” birthday has arrived. The one where people start celebrating the “x” anniversary of your 29th birthday. THIRTY. But I’m not dreading it. I’m embracing it. Maybe when I get closer to 40 I’ll start wishing I was younger. But for now, thirty is a good age and I’m happy with it (…not that I can do anything about it anyway).

The close of my 20’s, however, is bittersweet. A lot of really amazing things happened in my life during my 20’s. Here are the highlights (and a few lowlights). These experiences have built character and shaped me into the person I am today. Without further ado, a look back at the last decade…(brace yourselves, it’s a long one).

*Missions trips. My first one was to Chile in 2006. It was a construction project. First time out of the country. First plane ride ever. And the start of a major spiritual growth spurt. Also, spending New Years Eve on the beach at Viña del Mar watching fireworks over the ocean was a pretty memorable way to kick it off 🙂

*Other missions trips: Louisiana with PBU for Hurricane Katrina relief (2006). A sports camp in Holland (2006). Kentucky for a VBS type of program (2007). And the last one, Guatemala “vision” trip (2008). I think everyone at some point should go on trips like these. They are life-changing, perspective-changing experiences. You go there on a mission to serve and help the people you’re visiting, hoping you make a difference in their lives. But you never expect just how much the experience is going to affect you too (in a positive way).

*Transfer from Temple University to Philadelphia Biblical University (now Cairn University). From a major in Journalism and Theater to a major in Biblical Studies and TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages)…I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to explain that acronym to people. It’s a thing. I swear.

*CLC. Where I met my best friends and have a lot of great memories (small groups, True Life, sleepover at Sarah’s, etc.)

*Speaking of best friends, living on my own with them right after college, before we all got married, is one of highest of all the highlights. “The good ole’ days” as they say, at 614 Central Ave.

*YABS at the Trumbore’s (young adult bible study). Amazing group of people. Learned so much more about the Bible (specifically the book of Ephesians, which we spent a year on), God, grace, love, and my own depravity. Aside: I wish there were more YABS in the world. Since we haven’t found one yet in CA….we’ll just start our own 🙂

*Had my heart broken (count them) 1, 2, 3, 4 times in a row before finally meeting my husband when I was 24. This included 1 dramatic 3-year case of unrequited love that ended with a journal/picture burning ceremony (yes, really). 1 case of “oh, I’m sorry I gave you the wrong impression…I just want to be friends” (after he showed up on my doorstep with flowers and took me on actual dates). 1 case of “what the heck was I thinking, he’s was terrible for me” but I didn’t realize it until after he broke up with me. And 1 case of meeting a soldier online who was stationed in Afghanistan; after writing to each other every day for 9 months, we finally met in person when he got back to the states. He kept postponing the meet-up for awhile. But eventually it did happen. He acted awkward and uncomfortable. Pretty sure I got the “bad date call” and the evening ended quickly. I didn’t hear from him for awhile after that. Turns out…..he had a girlfriend.

So yeah…

*I almost up and moved to Colorado after that (seriously, I started networking and job searching), but then I met this new guy at church with a weird name. He was quite handsome.  He swept me off my feet, proposed and married me within a year 🙂 Fifth time’s a charm! We got married on July 17, 2010. Also one of the highest of all highlights and the start of one great big adventure!

*We spent the first year of marriage living in a house in a constant state of construction. I did dishes in our bathtub, and we cooked all our meals in a crockpot, microwave or on a griddle, in our bedroom. Going from the first floor to the third floor (which was the only finished floor in the whole house) required risking life and limb. We can survive anything after that!

*Then Ivor got a job offer at GOOGLE. He applied to a position at the NYC office, but was asked to interview for one at Google Headquarters in Mountain View, CA instead. We never thought he’d get it. But then he did. It was a difficult decision (making a massive move across the country and leaving all our friends and family), but a no-brainer at the same time. We couldn’t pass up that opportunity.

*We moved to California in July of 2011. I started a temp job at a law firm in downtown San Francisco (who was I???) before getting an awesome job in the Creative Writing Program at Stanford University (that job was much more “me”). I do miss it there.

*Got pregnant but miscarried in April 2012. One of the hardest things I’ve ever gone though (makes those 4 heartbreaks look like a stubbed toe). But I got pregnant again in July 2012 and Gwen was born on 3/23/13. I became a mommy!

*Left my job at Stanford after she was born to start a new one: SAHM/WFHM.

*SURPRISE! Got pregnant again in the same year. Little Ivor was born on 6/2/14. We became a family of 4, very quickly. And I was basically pregnant for 2 years…

And that brings us to today.

I do love my life. I have so many great experiences and memories to look back on (and crappy ones that I’ve learned from). I’ve had my legalistic goody-goody phase. My “let’s see how close to the edge I can get without falling off” rebellious phase…which really wasn’t all that rebellious now that I look back on it. I took way too many selfies (before they were even coined “selfies”). I put song lyrics in my facebook status updates to reflect my current emotional state. Oh, 20’s….I shall miss you. But…goodbye!


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