Happy birthday to me! I’m 28 today, an age that means I can no longer say I’m in my mid-twenties, as my husband kindly pointed out to me yesterday. Thanks, honey.
Overall, the day was ordinary, but much thanks to all of my friends who wished me well on Facebook. In general, birthdays get you thinking about what you expected to accomplish by this age when you were a kid. At one point, I even made up a bucket list, even though I was only about 14. And I’ve realized there’s a number of things I haven’t done yet, a number of things I now know I will never do, some things I’ve actually accomplished, and many I’ve done that I would have never expected.
Things I haven’t done yet:
– Write a book: Still working on this one. This blog’s just the beginning, I tell you!
– Bicycle across the country: This is a life-long dream and will definitely happen someday.
– Hike the Appalachian Trail: Ever since reading A Walk in the Woods, this has been on my Must Do list.
Things I will never do:
– Live in a house on a cliff in Boston: Mainly because it’s physically impossible. My geography wasn’t fantastic. I’d still like to live in or near Boston at some point though; it’s one of my favorite cities.
– Own a dolphin: I imagined I would have a pool that the dolphin could come and go from the ocean as he or she pleased. Again with the Not Physically Possible combined this time with Illegal. I liked Seaquest 2020 entirely too much (anyone else remember that show?).
– Develop skill at drawing: I’ve got too many other things to do that I’m not going to spend my time on something I’m not very good at and leads to frustration. If I want to spend my time doing something I’m not very good at, I can always go back to music.
– There were a bunch of other things I vaguely remember, like being able to made a 3-point shot in basketball, but all of which fell under “develop skill that I’m not very good at and don’t like that much.”
Things I’ve actually accomplished:
– Become a professional writer: I regularly get paid to write, therefore Professional.
– Work in an environmental area: When I was little, I imagined that I would be a marine biologist in the summertime and a famous novelist in the winter. After all, marine biologists spend all of their time outside and so wouldn’t have anything to do in the winter, right? As brilliant as that career plan was, it just didn’t work out. But on the other hand, I’m grateful that my specialty in science communication is about as close as one can get to the career path they thought up in third grade.
– Lived in England: I’ve forever loved the U.K. and wanted to live there. Thankfully, my experience didn’t sour me on it at all, and it was actually quite difficult to leave.
– Use my maiden name professionally: As a kid, I assumed that of course I would be married and of course I would be a Famous Author. So I decided that I would use my married name for everyday life and my maiden name for my writing so I wouldn’t attract crazy stalkers. Not ambitious at all. Unfortunately, I am not a Famous Writer, but I love my maiden name but also wanted to use my maiden name, so I use Brescher as a middle name.
– Become a gardener: I don’t know that ever formally thought about gardening being in my future, but damn, I loved playing the dirt. It was inevitable.
– Living in a small town: I was never a city girl, but I also knew I didn’t want to live somewhere like the unwalkable, strip-mall suburb I’m from. I’ve liked the idea of a small town for a long time and the Town of Rockville is a lot more like one than most people realize.
– Earn a graduate degree: Despite my mother’s teasing that I should be a doctor and my push-back against it, I knew I would pursue higher education. Because I’m just that much of a book-loving nerd.
Things I’ve done that I would have never expected:
– Become a decent cook: I never put any thought into needing to cook until Chris started working nights and I had to either cook for myself or eat every meal with my parents. I love my parents – but I learned how to cook.
– Work for the federal government: Does anyone think they’ll work for the federal government as a kid, unless they want to be President?
– Be married to a professional cook: Hell, I didn’t know this when I married him. He cooked then, but hadn’t decided on it as his career path yet.
– Live in the Washington, D.C. area: My top cities were Boston and San Francisco. But I’ve grown to love D.C.
– Own a gadget that is totally in The Future: Seriously, did anyone really imagine iPhones?
– Hitchhike and mistakenly herd sheep in Ireland: Just needed to get this one out there.
All in all, pretty good for 28 years old.
Was there anything you thought you’d do as a kid that you haven’t done yet? Anything you’ve done that you’ve never expected?