30th Birthday Photos
There are a million things I learned during my 20s. It's hard to shorten it down. My 20s felt like more of a growth experience than any other period of my life thus far. Kind of like being thrown into the deep end before you're confident you can swim. Even today, it still feels like a whirlwind. Between living in four different cities, getting married, losing loved ones, getting a dog, graduating with my masters, buying a home, and changing careers it's hard to believe so much has happened. I know this next decade of life will be filled with even more firsts. And I'm ready for it! I thought I would share 5 things I learned from my 20s. Hopefully they are relatable to you as well. Even if some of them seem a bit silly. 😉
1 . Family is Important
After high-school, I thought the thing to do would be to move away and go to college. Not that this was a wrong decision in hindsight, for some this might be one of the best decisions they make in life! For me, what I quickly learned was that I was burning a trail back to my hometown any chance I got. This continued even after Alex and I got married, seeing as we were both grew up in the same place. Eventually, the both of us realized it made so much more sense to be close to family. To be present in their lives and not miss events because we live so far away. The decision felt right and we do not regret it at all. Something very big would have to tear us away again. What that might be, I have no idea. But at the moment, this feels like exactly where we are supposed to be.
2 . You can switch careers
The pressure to make a choice that impacts the rest of your life felt heavy on me as I grew up. If you've know me since my elementary days, you might remember that I declared very early on that I would be an Architect. A plan I carried up until my senior year of high-school. To be honest, I still think about it now lol. In college, I decided that I would be a speech-language pathologist. Something drew me in that direction, I can't even explain it! I mapped out my future plan and set the next 10 years in motion. As I started to practice therapy, I taught myself photography on the side. Falling in love with the possibility of doing photography for a living, I was torn between two worlds. It took me years to tell myself that it was alright to try something new. That I was not quitting something I had dedicated my life to. It will always be there and be a part of my story. Carrying skills from one world to another. I wouldn't be who I am today without taking risks. Which brings me to my next life lesson...
3 . Try New Hobbies
Throughout my 20s, I finally had the opportunity to try new things. If you see something that you think you might be interested in, don't be afraid to give it a go. You might love it or you might hate it, but that's part of the journey. It could open you up to knew relationships with people who share similar passions. For me, I always thought I would love knitting until I tried it. It was probably one of the most frustrating things I've done 😂. I immediately abandoned that one. Switching gears, I tried rock climbing, which I absolutely loved and met some of the coolest people that I would never otherwise encountered. Obviously, the biggest hobby I tried was photography. This one was life changing and I'm thrilled to be able to say that it is now a career. Not only that, but it's leading to new friends and relationships!
4 . Learn You're Strengths (I'm an introvert 😉)
Learning how to work optimally for my personality was an enormous undertaking during my 20s. I pursued avenues that went against my strengths and taxed my mental and physical health. I could not tell you how many personality tests I took in my 20s 😂, but eventually the message sunk in. I thrive working mostly in quiet environments and having time to myself. You might be completely opposite, or need different things, but that's OK!!! We need all different types of people in the world because we are all good at different things. That's just part of the beauty of life. When we're working with our strengths and not against them, we can do our best and most creative work.
5 . Print Pictures
OK, this is a silly one. But I had to end on something light hearted 😍. I feel like it's worth mentioning because we live in a digital world. I must have thousands and thousands of pictures stored on devices between hard drives, servers, SD cards, and my phone. Many of which will sit there for eternity. Last year, I made a conscious effort to create a memory book full of my favorite pictures throughout the year. I ordered it, shipped it to my home, and FELL IN LOVE. Seeing images of the memories I most cared about was something I knew I needed to make time for in the future. This year I've been even more diligent to save photos I want to remember and have them printed at the end of the year. While I'm giving a memory book example, you could just start with single photos! These can make all the difference in the world too. Photos can show our legacy, and may even out live us. Making them all the more precious.
Cheers to the Next Decade and All the Memories to Come
Hair: Crystal from the Clip Joint
Makeup: Tabitha Nash
Coffee Mug: Ridley Creations Co. on Etsy
1991 Vintage Sweatshirt: Passion Pursuit on Etsy