A Few Life Lessons I Have Learned In My (Ahh!) 27 Years

“I am not someone who is ashamed of my past. I’m actually really proud. I know I made a lot of mistakes, but they, in turn, were my life lessons.” ~ Drew Barrymore

It is true what they say with age comes maturity. With another “21” Birthday here, I can’t help, but be reflective of some of the lessons I have learned in my 27 years, new grey hair, wrinkles and all!

I kid. I am not that melancholy at turning 27. (I mean 21….again) The last 27 years have witnessed immense growth, challenge, and change. I can not wait to see what the next 27 will bring. In fact many experts feel that the brain does not fully develop until you turn twenty-five…I guess that means I have only been an adult for two years. Phew! Let the adulting begin!

Friendships come and go

The loss of friendship is tough especially when you think they were the life long bestie kind. Life goes on. You grow. Sometimes you grow apart. The last couple years I was given the reality check that friendships I had held dear weren’t made of concrete after all. From lack of communication, to needless arguments to just downright ghosting. It sucked and at times was hard to come to terms with.

Yet, with the end of friendships, have come new ones. Ones that have changed me for the better. They say people come into your life when you need them. It is so true. For those who have passed through I am grateful and for those who have decided to stay I am insanely blessed.

Every relationship is a learning experience

I hear many of my friends lament about past relationships despite being in new committed ones. Yes break-ups suck. But much like old friendships, I am a firm believer that everyone is in our life for a specific purpose, even if it is fleeting. They teach us something new, giving us a chance to grow and and turn introspective with ourselves.

Yes, it is easy to get pulled onto the bitterness train. Constantly bitching and wondering WHY (Oh WHY?) didn’t it work?

But. DO. NOT. DO. IT! Don’t you dare!

I have been there, and it is hard at times NOT to be bitter. But holding onto that bitter negativity serves no purpose. Every good and bad relationship teaches us all something. If nothing else but what we do and do not want out of a partner. Exes weren’t the fabled one. It doesn’t make them or me bad. It just means they were put in my life for a reason and when it runs its course Move on! In the words of Elsa… “Let it go!” Because when you do, you are that much closer to finding your Prince Charming.

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Status isn’t everything

This is a hard one. A few years ago, I dated a guy who came from that world. He grew up with those you read about on Page Six. In fact he HAD been on Page Six. His mom was an honest to goodness socialite. While I had thought it sounded glamorous, it wasn’t. It was so out of touch with reality, I felt like I was on Mars. While it might be for some people, it wasn’t for me (though I still want a yacht…and that Chloe bag!)

Working hard may not always be fun, but it is MINE. MY work. MY effort. MY struggle. That is what makes the success so much sweeter. I want to enjoy what I have made, not be so crazy busy that I can’t enjoy the fruits of my labor. I do not want my kids to think of themselves as accessories or have them raised by nannies. I want to SEE them and spend time with them and my husband.

Striving for goals is one thing, but striving for status means you lose sight of what life has to offer. You aren’t living in the moment. You are living out of it.

Have Adventures

It isn’t always easy to travel the world. I know I am extremely blessed to have been able to do as much as I have done and will do in the future (which may or may not include a Visa…..Yes peeps 27 is going to be very good indeed!) It is hard when you have to do that thing called adulting. But life is so incredibly short, and while goals are important, I am a firm believer in not wasting a minute of it. Just because you aren’t a a globe trotter does not mean you can’t have adventure. Push outside your comfort zone. Go for a hike, or try that class. Explore the neighborhood next to you. To quote Rent “No Day but Today.” Live every minute, whether it is in your back yard or across the globe!

Appreciate those that are there for you.

Never lose sight of the people that are there for you. It is so easy to get wrapped up in life, work, school, adulting (that dirty word again!) but it is important to make time for those who have stood by you. If you don’t, they may not be there in the end. I have been guilty of this, especially when it feels like we are “connecting” with social media. The truth is, this is not a solo solitary existence we are living. We need people. No matter how introverted you are we still need people. We were put here for a reason and I am strong believer that the main reason is so we can connect. So call, text, make time to hang out. Connect!

Do NOT be ashamed of WHO you are.

We live in a world that makes it so easy to cast stones, To be judgy. Your story is your Own. And YOU are the one living it. Own it. Own you. Be you. Do you.  Who ever that is, do not let anyone try to tell you differently. DO not let anyone try to change you and do not let anyone make you ashamed of who you are. Your story is as beautiful as you are. Own it.

Love wholly 

Do not be afraid to love with your whole heart. It can be incredibly scary and nerve wracking. Sometimes you feel like you are a baby bird out on that limb, unable to fly. BUT do IT. You will not regret it. Life is to short to NOT share your heart. When we give love wholeheartedly and unconditionally, we are also then able to receive it. Be open.

Lastly live out a place of gratitude

Be grateful, be kind. One of my favorite sayings is from Disney’s Cinderella:

“I have to tell you a secret that will see you through all the trials that life can offer. Have courage and be kind.” ~ Cinderella

It is so easy to take things for granted, to expect things, but honey does get you more bees. Yes, the world can be unfair, yet every breath we take here is one that should be taken with gratitude. It is a blessing just to be able to live.

What are some lessons you have learned in your life so far?