Waking up 26.
There are some momentous birthdays that happen in/around your twenties, all representative of some new freedom or privilege in life.
16: You can drive.
18: You’re now a legal adult, you can vote (and can now get you a sugar momma/daddy…legally).
21: TIME TO RAGE. (In moderation, because school comes first- Right mom and dad?)
23: Jordan year. Time to start your path of greatness. (AKA figuring out how to keep your college drinking habits while holding down a full time job)
24: Kobe year. Time to shoot your shot. (AKA trying to hit on your attractive boss because you can always find another job right?)
25: Lower car insurance. Lower car rental prices. You made it to the hump of your 20s. The world is your oyster.
But today, I wake up 26-years-old. Nothing glamorous about it. It’s on the downhill to 30. One year older, but also one year wiser. The forgotten birthday in your 20s. But maybe the most important one. Why? Because now that I have no more “big” birthdays to look forward to in my twenties, I have everything else to look forward to in life.
I wake up extremely contemplative and humbled by the things that I have going on in my life. Is everything perfect or the way I imagined them? Oh, by no means. I thought by now I would be married, with at least one kid, and working a job where I wore a suit to work and made $70K a year. In reality, I’m single, no children (I’m not TOO upset about this one), and working a retail job where I wear basketball shorts and sneakers to my “office” (again, not TOO mad at this one, either). So, I went pretty far in the opposite direction on my ideal life spectrum.
But I’m happy and extremely grateful. I have coworkers that respect my hard work and passion for my job, friends that really care about my well being, and family that would do anything in the world for me.
AND I HAVE MY OWN SHOE ROOM.*
*Sidenote: I always love the question, what would your (enter younger age) self say to you now if they saw the way your life was? There might be some things that 16-year old Caleb might not be happy with, but one thing I guarantee- he’d high-five the crap out of me for the shoe room. SO TAKE THAT, HATERS.
So, I wake up to today feeling very blessed to just be here. Many people didn’t make it through this last year, but I, for whatever reason, did. I’ve never been big on celebrating my day of birth, but that’s a reason in itself for grand celebration.
I don’t know what the next year holds. But I’m extremely excited. I’m going to keep pushing. I’m going to keep growing. And I’m going to keep taking it day by day. After all, 30 can wait- I just want to enjoy 26.
Thank you to everyone who has pushed and motivated me to this point. Thank you for being there when I needed you. Thank you for giving me tough love when I was being a little punk. And thank you for keeping my sensible when I wanted to buy another pair of shoes.
And to my 16-year-old self:
Let your friends keep making fun of you for stretching all the time. You’ll get the last laugh.