Last Friday was my birthday and I turned 28, an anxious 8 years away from 20 and 2 away from 30….but here is some semblance of wisdom I think I have learned in those full 28 rotations around the sun.
1) Please eat slowly. The food isn’t jumping off your plate, and your stomach will thank you later.
2) Don’t think you can have it all at once. Maybe you can have it all but over a slow duration.
3) Be grateful for the friends whom you can call at midnight on your birthday because you are having an irrational (privileged) existential crisis about getting older. Never let them go.
4) Be in the moment. Truly be in the moment.
5) CALM THE FUCK DOWN.
6) Thank god for therapy. I know Freud didn’t get women, but talking to a stranger about all of your inner anxieties, past demons, and future doubts is fucking incredible. KEEP DOING IT.
7) Don’t worry about being “ too intense” for some people and tone yourself down. Don’t be with the people whom you can’t be fully vibrant with.
8) Have your life be filled with one-way tickets not dresses.
9) Call your mom more. Seriously. She is fucking badass who brought you into the world, will dance to Michael Jackson with you in a grocery store, and she doesn’t deserve a sassy response 12 hours after she texted you an innocuous question.
10) Also call your dad more. He is also so wonderful and you are fucking lucky to have a great male role model in your life. He grows plants and makes the world more beautiful.
11) Spend more time in places that make you happy.
12) Make the places happy that you don’t always love ( #apartmentjungle).
13) Please dance more. Please, please, please.
14) Traveling the world is the greatest thing you can do with your limited existence on this huge planet.
15) If you can’t write down 5 reasons why you like someone, don’t hang out with them.
16) Talk to people who think differently than you do and really listen.
17) Also get out of the house 15 minutes earlier- the subways are unruly and are under no obligation to stick to a schedule. Ever.
18) Appreciate you got to make it 28 years with only minor physical and emotional damage. Others aren’t so lucky.
19) Stop thinking “ it will only take 5 minutes.” It never does. It never will. Things always take more time, so start planning for that.
20) Talk to more strangers.
21) Appreciate that you live in the greatest city in the world- even if it is overcrowded, overpriced, cacophonous, and occasionally lined with human fluid- it’s the only place you get to be the weirdo you are and no one cares. People travel for thousands of miles just to stand for a moment where you get to walk every day.
22) Be aware that you are what you think.
23) Love the creative path you are on- it may have taken you 28 years to embrace that you are an artist, but for some, it could take a whole lifetime.
24) Don’t worry about not having “a real job.” Worry about not making enough of the magic that is within you.
25) Don’t think you have to finish books. If it isn’t pulling you in, put it down, and pick up something that is.
26) Tell people you love and appreciate them more. You have a fucking awesome social group, and you are not entitled to them. Tell them you love them. Tell them you love them. Tell them you love them.
27) Be fucking kind to yourself. Stop telling yourself that you aren’t good enough, that you are fat, and weird looking. The last two don’t matter and the first one is bullshit.
28) You come from a line of weird, wild, and wonderful women. Don’t let them down.