I turned 24 on December 29th. My past few birthdays, I didn't feel like the age I was turning had much relevance. I mean, I did turn 22 right when Taylor Swift's "22" song was gaining popularity. Besides that though, the age I turn on a birthday never has held much meaning to me. I think that's a good thing. Hopefully I'll still feel this way as I get older. I never want to be the lady in my 40s or 50s who resents my birthday because I'm turning a year older. I want my birthday to always be a celebration of the life I've lived, not the age I'm turning.
However, turning the age of 24 seemed to have a bit of an impact on me.
When I turned 14, I got Switchfoot's album "The Beautiful Letdown". One of my favorite songs on the album was called "24". I remember listening to that song over and over and deciding that somehow, the age of 24 must have some kind of magic to it. And I would turn that magical age in 10 years. When you are 14, 10 years seems like an eternity. So with an eternity to go, I dreamt up all the incredible things I would do with my life by the time I turned 24.
I hope 14-year-old Kelsey wouldn't be disappointed in what I've become. I still have a lot of goals I want to reach and places I want to see, but I think I'm doing pretty decent things with my life. I mean, I haven't succeeded in world domination yet, but I'm getting there ;).
For my birthday, Brian offered to take the day off work and go skiing. That really meant a lot to me. I know for Brian, birthdays aren't a huge deal. However, I take them pretty seriously. I love doing anything and everything I can to celebrate the people in my life when they have a birthday, so it means a lot that Brian would do that for me in return on my special day. We invited my sisters and Mom to join us, and we skied our little hearts out.
If you know me, you know that I absolutely LOVE a good snowfall. When there are tons of snowflakes falling silently to the ground it just feels completely magical. When we got up to Beaver Mountain, it was magic snowing and it kept it up the entire afternoon. I keep telling myself it was a birthday present for me from God. Not that I'm so special that God should give me a birthday present, but it's a nice thought. It was freezing though, but there was even something about that which was nice. When we went in the lodge for hot chocolate, it felt amazing for my toes to thaw out and to feel the warmth of the cocoa run down my throat and land in my tummy. It was like my body was saying, "Happy birthday! You're alive! I'm taking you down mountains! I'm freezing to remind you how alive you are! And because we are freezing, this hot chocolate tastes like heaven!"
It really did taste like heaven. I'm not really a big hot chocolate drinker, but that was probably the best cup of hot chocolate I've ever tasted. I want to remember it forever.
I don't know if 24 is truly as significant and magnificent as I made it up to be when I was 14, but I am pretty dang excited for the coming year. I think it's going to be a good one full of living and not merely just existing. Every second of every day counts. It's actually a cool thing to have a birthday at the end of the year. I feel like I get to do an extra lot of contemplating on the past year . . . as well as planning for the coming year.
In the words of Switchfoot, "I'm not who I thought I was 24 hours ago . . ."