As I sit here writing this, I'm only a few hours from my 25th birthday. That really blows my mind. Not because I'm 25, but because I don't know where the last year went. 2011 was a year that I won't soon forget, and not just for good things. It has been a wild 12 months, and the fact that I'm turning 25 only amplifies that.
2011 brought some great opportunities for me. I got to go back to downtown Toronto for a few days, the first time I've actually stayed there, and it was a blast. I saw my first Major League Baseball game in Toronto, a wonderful AL East matchup between the Jays and the Red Sox, and the Jays actually won. I also got to see the Niagara falls for the first time. The falls are simply breathtaking. There really aren't words to describe how big they are. It is something everyone should see once. I went back to the Oakanogan valley for the second year in a row. My family went there every year for many years when I was a kid, and I'm loving the return of that tradition. I attended Fragapalooza for the 5th time. I was able to go to the Penny Arcade Expo in Seattle in August. PAX is an amazing experience and one I won't forget. I'm really hoping to go back again this year. I also got to see another baseball game in Seattle and the beautiful Safeco Field where the Mariners, a pretty terrible team also won, beating the Angels.
Even with all of those great things I did last year, it was still a difficult year. A couple things changed with my family in the past year. While those closest to me will know what I'm talking about, I haven't, and won't, talk much about it in a public forum. My family was presented with a new challenge this year, one that we will have to face for a long time. It is what it is, and the learning curve has been steep, but life does continue on. The year was difficult, and while nothing has changed, a lot has been learned and my hope is that while things might not necessarily get better, we are a bit better equipped to deal with what comes our way, and managing things will be better, if not easier.
Turning 25 has made me think a lot in the last couple weeks, both about the past and the future. The last two years have been years of change for me. I've developed a lot of new friendships, many of them thanks to things like Twitter, and have seen some old ones fade away. I know that it is normal for that to happen, but it still makes me pause sometimes. I think about how I'm 25, and have already been working full time for 5 years. While I don't regret it, sometimes I wonder what might have been had I not done that so early, how different things would be. But what's done is done. I have a good full time job with a good company. While I am not going to say that I'm working my dream job, mostly because I'm still not 100% sure what that even is yet, it's not a job that I hate, and right now that is good enough for me.
But, one thing I want to stop doing is looking back. As I said the last 2 years have been years of change for me. I don't' see this year being any different, but this year I want to have a different attitude. My goal for this year is to think less about the "what if". Too many "what if's" have led to too many missed opportunities, too much uncertainty. I want to stop worrying about what might happen and just see what actually does happen. I have some decisions to make this year, and some of them might include letting go of the past a bit. I think I have made great strides in the last year especially, and it is time to continue that.
So, 25, I'm coming for you. I'm looking forward to you, and I can't wait to see what you have to bring. I know you aren't always going to be kind to me, but the feeling will be mutual. What matters is that I'm heading into it full steam ahead. Lets see what happens.