Wednesday, November 4, 2015


Every birthday surprises me.
Every year.
Every passage of time.

As if I forget that time is happening whether I like it or not.
Time is happening.
Time has happened.

Today is my twenty-eighth birthday.

And more than once during the past year, I've stopped to tally up how I got here, like, "Okay, we've been in Korea for two years and we came in August of 2013. We were married in 2012. So yeah, I guess I am twenty-eight!"

More often than not, it feels like the math just doesn't add up. But it does.
My heart just needs to catch up to my head.

And so to help ground me in this moment and this year, some thoughts to ponder:

1. What brought me joy?
Living in Korea.
Spending time with my husband.
Playing Ultimate Frisbee.
Laughing with and learning from my co-workers in Korea.
Becoming an auntie in March and meeting her in October.
Traveling to America, Japan, China, Thailand, Cambodia, and Indonesia.

2. What are some of my favorite memories?
Riding bikes around sun kissed, Udo island in Korea with my parents when they came to visit.

Flying to Nebraska for six days for my best friend's wedding. Jumping on the bed in our excitement. Standing there by her side knowing that I wouldn't have missed it for the world.

Coming home to a tent set-up in our living room, camping chairs, a "fire" on the TV (compliments on YouTube), and the movie Wild because my husband loves me so.

Playing women's Ultimate Frisbee with the Mother Huckers and going undefeated in the Summer Showdown tournament.

Standing on the Great Wall of China with Jeremy and re-visiting Angkor Wat in Cambodia knowing I'm in a much better place than the last time I was there.

3. What did I learn?
Try as I might, putting people/cultures in boxes doesn't serve anyone and rarely turns out to be accurate. Just let people be people, free from whatever categories I feel I need to put them in so that it can all make sense.

Marriage is hard and marriage is beautiful.

I learned how to record music on GarageBand and how to make videos on iMovie!

I'm learning about culture shock and adjusting to life between homes.

4. How about next year?
I want to spend less time on social media.
I want to read 40 books.
I want to start taking guitar lessons.
I want to--at least--try Crossfit.
I want to be content: here, there, and everywhere.

5. How old would I be if I didn't know how old I was?
     Easy. Twenty-three. Because I spent 18-23 recovering from an eating disorder and 24-28 finding my feet again. That process of healing made me feel like those years didn't "count" and I lost track of time. Of course, part of me wishes I could get those years back, and I wonder if I'll always feel five years younger than I really am.

This is what 28 looks like.

Here's to many more...