This time last year, I turned twenty four while climbing the Great Wall of China. I was hopeful for my future and excited for what I was going to accomplish over the next year. Well here I am a year later and nothing has changed - except now I am 25. Two weeks ago, the day before I turned 25, I was still freaking out a bit, as my friends are getting married, having babies, buying houses, and I am no where near prepared for any of that! However, I know that my life is blessed as it is and I still have a lot to look forward to.
With each year, life gets better and we become more wise, right? I think with age that life gets a little more complicated, and we are faced with more twists and turns. Growing up we have no cares in the world. Our major responsibility is to go to school and perhaps do some daily chores that your mom has set for you. At the end of the day you probably do not know what "stress" is at the age of ten, and you're a ways away from experiencing it. Being a kid was fun, but now as adult we are faced to make choices that are going to affect the rest of our life. Even though life is more complicated now than it was fifteen years ago, I feel semi-ready to start making these decisions. I do not want to go back to being a kid, so I am grateful for the opportunities that I have had.
Between 24 and 25, I lost some weight (around 15 pounds), joined my first gym on my own, joined a book club and started reading again, experienced heart break, healed, fell in love, embraced change, travelled (more than I should have probably), made amazing new friends (but lost some on the way), moved to a better apartment, earned respect at work, became more comfortable in my own skin, and figured out what I want to do with the rest of my life (run an international study abroad program at any University). While the year had its ups and downs, I feel like it was a good year overall.
I don't know where my 25th year will take me, but I hope that when it's over and done with that I will still be "me". I'm constantly working at becoming a better "Ray" and with that takes time and patience. I am on a new path now, and I am excited to see where in the world I will be at this time next year.
Thanks to those who participated in the 25th birthday celebrations. It was a great night.