This is 26

This is 26.

I’ve been thinking about what I wanted to write on my birthday. Something honest; a representation of what I’ve been through and who I’m becoming. In truth, however, there are far more things running through my head than I could write into a post for this one day.

26 is figuring A LOT out.

It’s adapting and adjusting constantly. To life in general, to world issues, national issues, local issues, personal issues. It’s watching a global pandemic unravel the life you knew and believing you’re handling it all just fine until you’re not. Allowing yourself to not be okay as you watch it slip away, ask for help and continue to adjust as needed…to not want “to go back to normal” because deep down you know that wasn’t working.

26 is experiencing the life you currently have as it unfolds.

Trying to be present and take it all in. Knowing you’ll miss things along the way. Accepting it. Working to figure out what is, your likes and dislikes. Asking yourself “What do you want?”. 

26 is finding yourself.

Knowing you’ll still be finding yourself for years to come. Learning that it’s not a simple answer and that there won’t be just one answer either. That’s okay!

26 isn’t as bad as I once imagined it would be.

It’s challenges that will inevitably prove themselves valuable. It’s life and love, and home and health. Learning what those words mean for me. Because their meanings have changed over time, from when I was a little girl to a moody teen and even as a young adult navigating the world on her own. Though I would say they are far more in line with that little girl than I ever expected.

26 is being 3000km away from your entire family.

Working through the emotions that come with it. Navigating a new province, a new city, a new workplace, a new home and new people. In a world with so much more distance in your own backyard. Wanting nothing more than to surprise your sibling with a Thursday night dinner just because you can. Working through that distance to see the beauty in the adventure you’re on. I can’t say there have been many things harder than this [incredible] journey.

At 26, I feel lost, but I also feel more myself in many ways. I can say that I’ve become more aware of who I am and what I want, what truly is important to me. I’m learning that I don’t need to make excuses for myself. For the feelings I have, for the space I need, for not always being okay. I cannot say I know myself completely at this age because I will always be changing.

What I can say is this…I am dedicated to myself, to discovering all that I am and want to be. That is really all I can ask of myself. Just as 16 and 22 brought on their own challenges, adventures, and emotions, I expect nothing less from 27 and 34 and 68. When those times come I will reflect.

Until then, this is 26.

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