Another year older and a little bit wiser…sometimes

My butt is incredibly sore today. It’s a rather interesting way to end a birthday, but turns out sitting on it meant it needed massaging. And that hurt. But I think it’s going to be ok. With my flitting around the world this year it doesn’t quite feel time for my birthday to have come around again or that it’s been a year since granddad passed away. Charlie the cat is as weird as ever but he’s come around to sleeping on my bed and even thinks it’s fun to wake me up by standing on my head in the night. I spent the morning with mum at a spa for a detox treatment and I feel suitably loved and detoxed and filled with healthy chocolate. What on earth would the world do without chocolate?

The spa we went to gave me a little pink flower pot plant so I now have three living things that rely on me! I’m rather determined to keep it alive…the plant that is. I’m hoping the cat and horse can look after themselves a little because let’s be honest, I’m not actually that good at keeping even myself alive. But I’ve managed 22 years so that’s got to count for something!

I wanted to do a big post about how much has changed over the past year but sometimes there just aren’t words for things so here is a super brief recap:

I lost granddad, I brought a horse and sold a horse, Ivy had a baby horse and I sold him, I ran away overseas and travelled to nine countries in four months and absolutely loved it and learnt a bunch of life lessons, and I went from a four year relationship to single, I ended up with a cat. And here we are!

When I was a kid I always thought: “When I get to 21, life will be good”. I have no idea why it was 21, but I seemed to think life would stop there. I thought I’d have a car, a horse, a house, a job, and a degree and I’d be set for life. I have all that sure, but it’s nothing like I pictured and life is certainly not stopping here. I must chuckle at my much younger self and think, “Man, what am I going to think in another 10 years? Will I look back on my current self and think ‘how naive, if only you’d known’.” Yep, probably. But what I have come to realise is life never happens how you expect and even when it comes close to it, the feeling may be nothing like the one you’d anticipated. Walking away from my relationship was one of the hardest things to do. I wanted to fight, I wanted it to work. But I also hate giving up and sometimes I don’t know when to quit. Perhaps it was time to do so or perhaps I’m just stronger than I was four years ago, but I’m really quite ok. I’m sad in moments and angry in others but after losing people, seeing suffering in all parts of the world including my own, and having been diagnosed with a life altering health issue I feel like a break up is a mountain I’m well equipped to climb and with the support I have, there is absolutely no reason I won’t make a quick journey over the other side.

Anyway, instead of rambling on about all the changes I decided I’d instead write a list of all the things I’m grateful for in my life.

  • Amazing friends I’m not sure I’d be ok without
  • The chance to have worked at a great paper and have more experience under my belt than I ever imagined in my first 18 months of work.
  • A really cool, easy horse who is the bees knees
  • A not-so-cuddly cat who’s a bit weird but I like him.
  • Parents who are going to have to put up with my being at home a lot for the next few months
  • New work and volunteer opportunities
  • A body that functions properly 90 per cent of the time
  • A bed all to myself
  • Chocolate
  • The ability to travel the world on my own and all the incredible things I’ve learnt

I’d go on, but that’s the gist of it. In the past few months life has become an incredibly interesting and slightly frightening place to navigate. I spent several days standing on the top of mountains screaming “I’M ALIVE”, I spent days dragging a 20kg bag around with me, I’ve walked more miles than I ever thought was possible in four months, I’ve faced some of my biggest fears, I’ve eaten scorpions, I’ve seen suffering and heartbreak, and I’ve had the chance to change my world view.

Now I’m here and in my 22nd year I’m excited about what’s going to happen now. There are so many paths and picking the ‘right’ one seems scary, but it’s just taking that first step. And I’ll take it. Once I do, there won’t be any stopping me! For now the ‘to do’ list simply has one thing: keep climbing mountains and I mean that both figuratively and literally.

Tomorrow I’m heading up north with dad to celebrate the first year anniversary of granddad passing away. It’s a chance for me to revisit places Alex and I spent a lot of time and accept that’s part of the past, and it’s a chance to grieve but also acknowledge just how amazing granddad was and how mum we miss him, but also how ok we’re going to be.

So on that note, I’m going to leave this post with a bunch of quotes I found on this blog: http://thoughtcatalog.com/katie-wilkes/2014/12/20-quotes-that-all-20-year-olds-must-read/

“It’s better to have nobody than someone who is half there, or who doesn’t want to be there.”
Angelina Jolie

“You can tell so much about a person by the way they leave you.”
Redvers Bailey

“I will not be your sometimes.”
Anonymous, Six Word Stories

“The hours between 12 AM and 6 AM have a funny habit of making you feel like you’re either on top of the world or under it.”
Unknown

“I crave space. It charges my batteries. It helps me breathe. Being around people can be so exhausting, because most of them love to take and barely know how to give. Except for a rare few.”
Katie Kacvinsky

“The moment you feel like you have to prove your worth to someone is the moment to absolutely and utterly walk away.”
Alysia Harris

“Give yourself permission to immediately walk away from anything that gives you bad vibes. There is no need to explain or make sense of it. Just trust what you feel.”
Sonia Chuquette

“Nothing ever happens how you imagine it will.”
John Green

“Suddenly you’re 21 and you’re screaming along in the car to all the songs you listened to when you were sad in middle school and everything is different but everything is good.”
Unknown

“There had been too much emotion, too much damage, too much everything.”
Ernest Hemingway

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but building the new.”
Socrates

“If you don’t make time to work on creating the life you want, you’re eventually going to be forced to spend a LOT of time dealing with a life you DON’T want.”
Kevin Ngo

“We can judge our progress by the courage of our questions and the depth of our answers, our willingness to embrace what is true rather than what feels good.”
Carl Sagan

So just remember life is beautiful even when it feels like you’ve been sat on by a bus or a large horse. Always take a moment before you decided to get back up off the ground because the sky is pretty damn beautiful. If you’ve fallen face down though that doesn’t really apply, sometimes mud can be good for your skin. Just remember that. And if you’re lonely, get a cat…they’re remarkably uncomplicated, even the strange ones.

Now here’s a song.

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Hello 21

I began my 21st birthday dreaming about being a stripper. The problem with the dream was I really sucked at it. I managed to get stuck in my raincoat, while wearing a very old sparkly white t-shirt and track-pants. Not quite sure what was going on there. I didn’t make much money. I’m choosing not to read into that dream too much…

Yep, I’m 21 now. I have been trying to think of clever things to say for this post, as I can’t really not post on my birthday…but apparently creativity has abandoned me today, as has the sun.

Instead, I’ll just do a little update.

I’m moving house this weekend. I have five days to pack and clean what I can. I also need to set up the power and internet. Mainly so we have lights, and food, and music. One can live without these things (not so much food), but I’d also like to avoid having to do that if possible.
I have pulled my horse of the sales site, mainly because I don’t have enough time to sell him. The irony being I’m selling him because I don’t have enough time to ride him. But he looks pretty in a paddock.

Now my mare has foaled, I have three horses who all look pretty in the paddock. I mean, why have a cat as a pet when you could have a horse? Crazy horse lady right here.
I went out for a lovely dinner the other night with my family, my mother did a super job at making the night very special and gave me a cool book of my life. I would love to post all the pictures here but it might take me a while to scan them!

Things are changing. I don’t really do too well with change. I shut down into this strange person.

I don’t really talk much when things are changing, I think it’s my way of controlling what I feel like is spinning rapidly out of my control. It’s not really that I want to avoid people or shut down, but I no longer possess the ability to talk about anything, I simply have no idea how I feel. Because of this I prefer solitude, and I actually enjoy it sometimes.

I spent my 21st birthday evening washing all the windows in the house. It took me about an hour and I was out till dark.

I was spoilt by my friends and family and workmates, so I feel pretty blessed to have had an incredible few days with so many gifts and food. Though, to many people spending my birthday evening alone, washing windows, might seem pretty sad.

It was one of the best things for me. It is my way of coping with life, it is my way of coming to terms with things that have been biting my ankles. It doesn’t matter what day your birthday is, life continues to happen.

I am moving house, and granddad is dying, and the paper is going twice weekly. It doesn’t really matter if I like what’s happening, it is happening and I am coming to terms with more work, a new place to call home, and losing my grandfather.

This year has been a roller coaster of great highs and great lows, not because I’m emotionally unstable (though, that is also a possibility), but because I’ve just reached that point in my life. While I may get motion sick, I am good at holding on. You’ve just got to buckle in and hope there is a scenic stretch coming up shortly.

Life is a blessing, and I’ve certainly had my fair share of blessings. So while my 20th year was certainly one which hit me with a large sack full of bricks, and I have a strong feeling my 21st year is going to be about the same, if not even more of a whirl wind, I’m prepared.

I’ve found ways to cope, even if mucking out stables, walking up hills, and washing windows on my birthday seem like strange ways of coping, I am coping.

One step after another.

A year older

The final few weeks. The sprint at the end of the marathon. *Final count down music plays in my head*. Life is, well, it’s scary. By the end of this month I will probably have my own place. Alone. An alone place. A permanent alone place. My horse, due to her now correct taste in men, should be pregnant. That might not seem like a big deal to most people. But it is strategic planning to create this tiny, kind of ugly, baby horse that is worth more than yourself. In $$ anyway. This tiny little thing that you wait for, for 11 months. The planning and the waiting and the money. Eventually this little, incredible thing pops out. That little thing has a lot riding on it. So it better work. 

I have a job. That’s great, wonderful, exciting, a huge relief. What most people don’t really stop to think about is, I have a job. I will be paid to do what I am good at. I will turn up to the office five days a week for eight hours a day and I will work. I will have to do a job and do it well. Responsibility is a terrifying thing. Exciting. But terrifying. People don’t stop to think, once you get a job, you actually have to do that job. 

Moving house, living alone, a sever lack of a hobby, a job. No more study. New, new, new, NEW, NEW! It is all new. And it is scary. I can do it. But it is scary. This city is home now. This is where I live. Not where I study. Where I live. My life, is here. 

My birthday finally came. With it comes the end of my degree. It doesn’t mean a year older. It means a whole new life. 

I don’t want to get older this year

It is August. My birthday is in three months. A little less actually. The problem with my birthday is it falls in the month that marks the end. The final chapter in this sunny little room with lemonade and cookies that is studying. It’s a cosy, though busy and like walking on a tightrope, and comfy life. Hearing speakers talk about their journeys during SPARK week I suddenly sat up.

My birthday is only three months away.

I finish tech just after my birthday.

MY BIRTHDAY IS ONLY THREE MONTHS AWAY.

Three months left of a lovely safety net – then it’s time to get a real job and live in the real world. What on earth am I going to make of myself? I could be so many things! Or, I could end up being nothing. I know what the goal is… it’s just all the little stepping stones that frighten me. ‘What if’s’ and maybe’s, possibilities and potential failures. 

I have to find a job, find a new house, probably move city, become ‘grown up’ and start earning money. And it is all happening just after my birthday. In three months. 

Of course when I was 14 and dating my first boyfriend I thought three months was forever, I now am quickly realizing it is not.

The thing is, it is not the finding a job, moving, growing up etc, it is knowing I may not. Scary thought really – ‘what if’ I don’t?