Sunday, December 23, 2012

May Your Path Be the Sound of Your Feet Upon the Ground

"Though I've never been through hell like that I've closed enough windows to know you can never look back. If you're lost and alone, or you're sinkin' like a stone....carry on. May your path be the sound of your feet upon the ground, carry on....carry on, carry on."--FUN

Birthdays are an interesting thing, they are a gift in and of themselves. So take a moment to unwrap them, think about all of the challenges you faced, the obstacles you overcame and the mistakes you made. Though some days are harder than others, you've gone through 365 of them and it's made you a stronger person. But it's more than that, birthdays are the gift that keeps on giving. You have in front of you another 365 days to be whoever you want to be, take on new challenges and breathe in new life. So surround yourself with the people you love, eat another slice of cake, and smile a little bit more, because the possibilities ahead of you are endless.

Another birthday come and gone, another page turned, and an end to a chapter of my life that felt like it only just began. Twenty-three was an astounding year, and I experienced more change than in the sum of the last few years. I finished my Master's degree, graduated and started my first real job. The transition from four part-time jobs to one full time one was an interesting one. Although, I do have an attachment to my pool and the swim lesson program I run, so I haven't quite let go of that one yet. I trained for, and successfully completed my first Half Ironman triathlon, which instantaneously invoked in me my new found love for the sport of triathlon that I foresee being a long term commitment. I took on my second marathon and set a PR of an hour and a half. I live on my own and do for myself, and while there are times that I miss being a child, living with my dad and seeing my siblings every day, I look at this as me being grown up and starting my life. This was only reinforced by the end of the grace period on my college loans! I've met a lot of people, some of them grew on me, shaped me, and others faded into the background. I'd say the combination of experiences and relationships over the year have given me insight into the person I am becoming. But even more than this is the motivation I put forth everyday in the tasks that I carry out.

I was on a run about a month ago, listening to my music and sitting with my thoughts...well no part of me was actually sitting, but you know what I mean. I do some of my best thinking on long runs, my knees will tell you otherwise though. It came upon me, however, that my birthday was coming up and I was one year away from my 25th birthday. A whole quarter-century of life! Being me, this signified that I would have 365 days to complete my "quarter centennial list" or things I want to do before I'm 25. This list has been added to, cut, pasted and probably had coffee spilled on it at least twice. So then I kept thinking, had someone told me this is where I would be with my life, five years ago I would have laughed at them, and told them they had it all wrong. But here I am.

So here it is, my plan, that probably won't go as planned. But it's what I will work towards because this is the person I want to be. For starts, in the next year, there are a few things I want to work on.
-- I want to work on being more comfortable in asking for help and letting people do things for me. I'm awful at this, and I will be the first person to admit it.
-- I want to be alright with knowing that it's ok to say goodbye. I have a tendency to try and fix things, mostly in my relationships, but this only leaves me exhausted....and some people are only going to hold you back, and offer you no growth as a person. I want to be able to surround myself with the people who support me, and love me all the time rather than just when it's convenient to them.

And of course the obstacles I will face along the way will be in the heart of the tasks that I take on. In the next year I hope to:
-- Sit for and pass my LSW test
-- Pass the Basic Skills math portion and finish my Type 73
-- Apply for school social work positions
--Set a PR on my Half Ironman distance at Racine
--Train for and complete my first Ironman
--Set a PR for my half marathon time (1:59:02)
-- Get a tattoo
--Write an article and have it published somewhere

Life is a lot like a good, hard, long race. Each mile marker moves you closer, motivates you, and reminds you that the last mile you just completed brought you closer to the finish line :)

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