I turned 27 today. I found my first two gray hairs this year and I honestly don’t know if they are from growing older or from stress but either way, it’s a daunting thought that ten years ago I was seventeen. I was seventeen when I graduated from high school. When I was seventeen, I had a head chock full of limitless ambition, a wallet (half) full of disposable income and a heart full of naivety.
I remember I used to have a mixed CD with Janis Ian’s At Seventeen on it. Unashamedly, I played it on repeat (ask my Dad) but I have to say, I didn’t learn the truth at 17, Janis. Not even close.
Maybe 27 isn’t the typical age for a post like this – it’s not exactly a landmark age like 18, 25, 30 – but honestly, 2015 has uprooted me from any sturdy ground I thought I had and tossed me into an ongoing cyclone in the form of a one way ticket from Winnipeg to Toronto. Mix that in with all the unusual situations and circumstances from years prior and I’ve found myself a riveting hodgepodge of anecdotes and … life lessons, unexpectedly.
27 of them:
1. Everyone could use a therapist. Go get one. Your friends and family are only able to remain neutral in perspective to a certain point. Go if only to learn more about yourself.
2. The bond between sisters is one of life’s greatest mysteries. Distance has no negative bearing on this bond. Distance also has no negative bearing on a bond between true friends – they always have your back and it doesn’t (shouldn’t) matter when you last saw or spoke to each other.
3. Mushrooms aren’t one of those things that’ll get better as you get older. They still taste like vomit so drop it.
4. I will always have the same bangs. So drop it.
5. Even when you think there’s no way in Hell – someone always thinks you’re beautiful.
6. Someone misses you right now. Terribly.
7. People don’t always call. Suck it up and call people. Sometimes hearing someone’s voice is the answer to that itch you just can’t scratch.
8. Toronto is a strange intoxicating terrifying vixen with whom you are in an intense and unpredictable love-hate relationship.
9. Take time to reflect on amazing people in your life who have passed away. You need to stoke those memories or they will fade. Share stories.
10. Your parents are human.
11. Sometimes you meet people at the wrong time in both your lives – that doesn’t mean you should dismiss them. It could soon be the right time. It could soon be the perfect time.
And you can rebuild (and strengthen) broken connections. It is worth it. Think twice before throwing away.
12. You are way too hard on yourself. Give yourself some credit. You’re a living, breathing human person in this messed up world and that in itself is HARD.
13. You are shaped by your childhood but you are not defined by it. Don’t mope about it. Get out there and kick some ass.
14. There’s no problem that an amazing piece of music can’t fix.
15. Wait – except the TTC. That’s always a problem no one can fix.
16. Not all battles are worth fighting. Choose wisely. Don’t give someone your time and energy if they won’t do the same.
17. Never stop meeting people. You will meet the greatest people in the unlikeliest of places.
18. Someone wants to take care of you. Believe them. Let them. Be vulnerable.
Be independent — but you don’t have to be tough all the time.
19. Even though love isn’t like the movies, love unapologetically and with your whole heart. Love comes in all shapes and sizes and takes work. But the outcome is glorious.
20. Saving money is always hard. Saying no to new lipstick is also always hard…
21. A flawed life is a beautiful life. Everything that is blemished is fascinating. Stop striving for perfection.
22. Coffee is and will always be life. Coffee cleanses be damned.
23. Winnipeg will always be there.
Oh! When you move to a new city & province, you’re the one with the accent who pronounces things weird.
24. Red wine >>>> all things. Exercise endorphins >>>> red wine hangover.
25. Never stray too far from your passion. Never stop exercising your creative spirit no matter how you have to do it.
26. Everyone’s allowed to be down and be low – but you’re the one who ultimately brings yourself back up. Even if where you’ve ended up on your journey isn’t for the reason you started, go with it. Cause you never know. Every day is a new opportunity to turn it all around.
27. Take your own advice.
… 27 isn’t enough.