Wednesday, August 15, 2012

quarter of a century.

i probably read at least one article a day from the Thought Catalog. the site is basically a collection of writers who are all in their 20s and 30s. and because of this, most of their articles are written for folks from that age group. it would probably take all of my phalanges to count the "what i've learned in my 20s"/"what you should do by the time you're 25" pieces on this website.
so since i just reached my 25th birthday this last weekend, i figured "why not me? i've done stuff."
i'll structure this in groups of 3.

things i cannot believe i've done.
  • walked with jelly fish in shallow water. call it being 18 and stupid haha. but i didn't get stung and have some pictures i hope i never lose.
  • nuked my roommate's student id. what? i didn't like her. it had a magnetic strip and computer chip in it, and though i was planning on only leaving it in there for 3 seconds max, it made a fireworks show in the microwave within the first half second. then i got shocked when i pushed the stop button! then she came back a minute later. bashful rating: code black.
  • didn't go to law school. i'm pretty stubborn. i decided i wanted to go to the college i went to when i was 15 after watching one of their soccer games. i didn't apply to any other schools. my plan was political science then law school. i had no plan b (obviously). well, after taking a few law classes within my major, i hated it and i wasn't doing as well as i needed to do get into a good law school. oh, and i disliked most of the people i was in classes with. then i heard law school likened to being beaten with 2 bags of oranges. and i was out. 
things i'm glad i did.
  • moved to denver. nothing builds character like going somewhere where (nearly) no one knows you. luckily, i moved out here with B. that first year was rough even so. but i feel now that i've settled into some kind of groove (or rut, depending on how you look at it). 
  • went to creighton. wasn't sure i was ever going to say that. after graduation, when the first job i got was checking groceries at hy-vee, all i could think about was how during my application process and freshman year all you heard was "bap bap, creighton graduates get great jobs, bap bap bap" but thankfully i took some classes outside of my major (very outside, and not just core) and really rounded out my person. those that stick out in my mind include ceramics, personal growth and development, christianity and the holocaust, and a class about the philosophical issues that will be raised with future of nanotechnology. 
  • learned to cook. i was lucky to have a mother who is a fantastic cook. however, i guess i thought she had it covered and never really helped/learned in the kitchen. did not think that through. now, don't get me wrong, i still love nuking me a corn dog, but i have to say there are few things more satisfying than cooking for you parents and your mother asking YOU for a recipe. or really just making something yourself, then sitting down at your kitchen table in your place and eating it.
things i've learned the hard way. 
  • letting go. this one relates to how i deal with people. i said it before, i'm stubborn. if i've invested a lot of time/effort into a relationship, things have to get really bad before i will take my talons out and move on. and by really bad, i mean "wreck me for years" bad. and then i feel like i wasted time.
  • sometimes you need help. ugh, pride -- i have it in spades. i don't like admitting i'm wrong. i don't like needing help (unless it's for something like moving). self-sufficiency is the name of my game. but the last few years have been a hard lesson in accepting help.
  • relinquish some control. there was a point a few years ago when i couldn't bear to be a passenger in a car. drunk people made me irrationally nervous. i was wound so tight that i barely ate and had explosive crying sessions most days. as that i am staring down the pike at being a military wife, i guess i need to give up some more control. 
 things i wish i'd have known before graduation. 
  • student loans blow. no, this wasn't actually news to me. but back in my promissory note signing days i wish i'd have done it with a little bit heavier heart. on the upside i've paid off over 20% already.
  • take advantage of naps! once you're in a 8:30-5:30 you don't get them and you rarely want to waste your weekends on them. follow up to this: soak in the staying up til the wee hours of the night because you suddenly can't really do it anymore. (i think it's a conspiracy that comes with receiving a diploma unless you plan to continue to grad/prof school)
  • don't freak out about your grades. i did pretty well in college by most people's standards (3.47 gpa) obviously not law school good. but then i went and took a job that i barely use my degree for. so my grades didn't really matter. 
things i hope to figure out in the next 25 years.
  • how to focus my energy onto one endeavor at a time. not to sound a braggart, but i'm naturally good at a few things (mostly creative/artistic stuff). but i can't pick one and try to improve my skills to excellent. i thought i could pick photography and just go. now i want to give ceramics another spin (pun intended). but then i think about poetry, writing, jewelry making, sewing, painting...and i have a really hard time picking one, even to focus on for a year.
  • learn to say uncle. sports-wise, i'm not competitive; i don't care. but when it comes to being right, oh boy -- despite the fact that "right" is subjective sometimes. and if i am caught wrong, i'll rarely use the word "wrong" i'll usually roll my eyes, sigh and say "fine." i need to work on this.
  • not to take things so personally. pretty much explains itself. i deal with people who don't think about me as much as i think about and try to be nice to them. and when small things happen or i hear negative feedback about myself, my bitch wall comes up fast. 
  • grow a longer fuse. (yeah, i'm adding a 4th to this group, so what, who cares?) i seem to remember being really even tempered in my youth and adolescence (at least for a kid and teen), but i can't do it anymore. call it hormones, call it immaturity, whatever -- i can go from fine to rage to bawling in 30 minutes, sometimes less. the rage concerns me most. i think the dogs have helped with this because i can forgive them almost instantly for annoying/dumb things they do. 
the end! 

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