This birthday feels big. The last year of my 20s. In some ways I'm ready - the 20s are a year of growth and change and making mistakes, and it seems like many people go into their 30s in a much more solid place. It's just a number, but somehow it feels symbolic - I want to be generally content with where my life is when I get there, ready for the next stage.
The last year and a half have been really good for me. I've found exercise I love and feel really strong and healthy, got Tumbles and have settled into a routine with her, and I've learned to stop letting anxiety sabotage me at work and finally feel like I am building the career I've wanted for some time. Now that a bunch of stressors have settled down, I'm finding more time to do hobbies outside of just baking. I've even started being able to keep plants alive! This is all very new. I went into 28 just getting started on a lot of things - I'd recently gotten super into ballet, I had just (finally) shown myself that I could accomplish things at work, and Tumbles was still a pup and took a lot of work (in fact, my birthday was one of my most stressful, sleepless, and all around emotional days last year). I feel like I'm on much more solid ground now.
Things are good.
But I still feel restless lately, although I appreciate that this restlessness comes in large part from a place of comfort in my life. I've been in the bay area for six years, and it's wearing on me. I moved here for work and because I knew a few people (hi, Tim), but I never saw myself staying long term. I've always missed seasons, particularly the crisp air and bright leaves of fall and the cold of winter. San Francisco has been changing, before and since I moved here. Rents have climbed almost as fast as my cushy tech income, people not in tech can barely live here anymore, and the city itself just feels exhausting lately for an introvert like me. I've enjoyed most of my time here, but I'm ready for something quieter, where I can buy a house and have my own backyard for Tumbles and settle into a less hectic lifestyle.
I'm hoping the next year will bring some of these changes, but it's out of my control in large part - the downside of settling down with another person - so time will tell! Either way, I hope I can continue to enjoy what I have and focus on the many, many good things in my life right now.
Here's to 29.