Today I:

 

Woke up to this:

 

A Good Way to wake up

This is mah burfday bike. I like her.

 

And soft sunset colored roses.
In vases, all over my apartment,
adding up to 30, with the most wonderful notes attached.

The Boyo snuck into my place in the wee sma’s with The Roommate’s help
and set all of this up–
let me tell you,
there are worse ways to wake up than to roses and a beach cruiser.

I love this man.

 

Birthdays are strange.

When I first met my friend Wylie,
he said that he was celebrating the first anniversary of his 29th birthday.

I thought that was silly at the time
(oh, 22!).

…I understand it now.

 

Today,
I am 30.

I am now officially the oldest unmarried woman in my family’s history.

I am wearing flats with my favorite black silk dress
because, in all ironies, I tweaked my back but good last night.

I am going to lunch with my favorite co-workers,
and I will *probably* be talked into getting the lavender duck sandwich,
because it is DELICIOUS.

The Boyo and I will go out to dinner tonight,
just the two of us,
and laugh about silly things,
and do the whole gaze-into-each-others’-eyes-over-candlelight-thing,
and then start laughing again,
because true love doesn’t take itself too seriously, you know.

He’s been with me since I was 18.

First friends,
now the core of my heart.

 

He is a good man.

 

Today I am grateful for…everything.
Even my twingy back.

I’ve been so afraid to relax and enjoy what I have right now
because I had so many Other Shoes drop on me over the last seven years,
Imelda Marcos would be jealous.

 

So today?

I am grateful for everything.

For my friends who carried me.

For The Boyo who has stayed.

For a car that works.

For an affectionate, smart little dog.

For my parents.

For my grandmother, who sends the strangest gifts
out of the deepest love of her heart.

For friends getting married, for being a part of their love.

For coffee.

For sunshine and rain.

 

For roses, an adventuresome bike, and a small stuffed dinosaur.

 

Today,
I am grateful for all things.

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Dear 29:

Well.

Here we are.

You certainly came along faster than I anticipated.

Let’s get a few things straight:

Your predecessor?
28?

Was a real bitch.
And honestly, there were times
(many times)
when I thought I wouldn’t make to you,
29.

That 28 was an abusive relationship–
always promising better things,
followed up by a swift slap in the face,
or a punch to the kidneys (where the bruises don’t show).

And I gotta tell you…

I am through with letting a year steamroll me.

I have great expectations for you, 29.
There’s a puppy, for one thing,
who will be full of cute and awesome,
and that stunningly selfless love that only dogs really possess.

There will be a new house for the Boyo,
one in which he can stretch out
and feel at home.

There will be parties.

Quiet nights.

My first salsa performance.

Christmas and snow and wonder.

All of these things.

And you know what?

No matter what you bring,
no matter if you’re even worse than 28,
I’m not going to give up or give in.

I belong to a faithful God,
and He has never abandoned me–
and even when I felt like He had–
there was always some small grace to get me through.

I am still a little afraid of you.
Still a little scared of finding myself not at all who I thought I would be by now.

But I hope you’ll be a grand adventure of a year,
that you’ll make me look forward to 30 even more.

Yes.

That sounds perfect.

You are going to be an adventure, 29.

I have a cute helmet.
I have a nice pedicure.

Bring it.