I decided at 22 that I was going to stop aging but my body decided to rudely ignore me so alas today, I am older. 27 to be exact...but if you tell me I look 22 who am I to correct you?
Celebrating birthdays like most things can be quite arbitrary. A tradition that we play out because we're told it's what's supposed to be done. Open your gifts, have a bunch of noticifications on Facebook from people you've not heard from for years, blow out your candles and repeat another year of life.
I call bulllshit. I make my birthday my own personal holiday, not because I'm self-indulgent but because for another year, I lived. For another year, I failed, I succeeded, I cried, I laughed, and most importantly I grew. I treat my birthday as an opportunity to take stock of where I am in my life and celebrate or appreciate everything the last year gave me.
But let's get down to it: my year in review. In the last year, I've been to new tropical islands and drank coconuts on the beach. I started my own clothing line to quickly realize I much rather stick to styling. I had the first death of a close friend. I got treatment for my PTSD and anxiety disorder. I got altitude sickness. I drove across America for the fourth time. I laughed. I cried. I made new friends. I had the most epic adventure in Scotland. I had the most romantic and dreamiest trip to England. I finally got over my aversion to wearing engagement rings. I learned a lot about who I was and what I'm capable of. I found my own voice. I had a panic attack or two. I saw a vicious election. I tuned in and spoke out. I spent weekends in the desert and peaceful moments in the forest. I wrote another film. I found a lot of clarity. I created as many reason to celebrate my life, my friends, and myself as humanly possible.
26 may have been one of the best and hardest years of my life but I'm so grateful for my every moment of it. I'm not afraid of aging nor does vanity keep me from enjoying it. The thing I can't stand about aging is any moment in life where I've held myself back or created a wrinkle from my ugly cry face. But I take those moments and find reasons to create smile lines instead and with each year, that gets easier.