Saturday, August 8, 2009

Ten Years Later

That picture was taken ten years ago today, on my 25th birthday. The guy in it, Murphy, I am happy to say is still my friend. I still have that dress, even though it doesn't fit the way it used to. Those are pretty much the only things that are still the same in my life. I don't live in the same city, I don't work in the same industry, I don't even have the same hair color. Am I happier? Most definitely. Smarter? I couldn't get much dumber than I was when I was 25. Better? I like to think so, but I do have my moments of regression. For all the things I have gained though, there are times I wish I could go back to being that girl. I thought I had life by the balls, and that I could do anything. I didn't worry about time, because I had plenty of it. I figured I had plenty of times to make and accomplish all kinds of goals.

Yeah, I didn't do that.

The 25 year old in my office says she has a whole list of goals, and dates she wants to accomplish them by. I admire her, and not in a "want to drink her blood to remain young" way. I will admire her even more if she gets any of them done within the given time frame. After all, one thing that I have learned in the past decade is that the one way to make sure something doesn't happen is to plan on it. I mean, sure there are those Horatio Alger stories of hard work and determination paying off, but most of the time dumb luck and timing play a big part. Anyone who tells you otherwise is probably trying to sell you a self help book.

Look at that girl above. She has no idea that she is about to move back to Utah to get her Masters degree. She has no idea that while in Utah her plans to move back to D.C. after grad school will be derailed when she meets the love of her life and decides being with him is the only thing she wants to do. She has no clue that all the birth control she is taking is useless, because to have a daughter she will have to adopt. And she had no idea that she will love that baby girl so much that even blogging about her makes her tear up. She has no idea how lucky she is. Of course, if you told her about all of that she probably would think none of that sounded very lucky at all. That's where the dumb thing comes in.

I guess what I am trying to say is that while youth and goals are great, just living life and appreciating it is better.

Wow, maybe I SHOULD write a self-help book... I will put it on my goal list.

24 comments:

Kim said...

Where is the "after" picture? I'm glad I waited to get married and have kids and even though I often wonder how I made it alive to 30, my 20's always make me smile.

Murphy Gilson said...

The guy in the picture went on to get thinner, then fatter, then a lot thinner, then waaaay fatter, and is now a little thinner than he was then. He also has less hair.

The End

Happy birthday, Lesbian Overall Girl!

DC Diva said...

Beautiful post, Libby. I may steal this idea in the future.

AND HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Rob said...

You're right ... plans are nice, but luck and happenstance are usually what make things happen. Happy Birthday. I'll bet this is the best one yet!

Amanda said...

Happy birthday Lib. You rock.

Tara said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tara said...

It's nice to have friends that remember when you were a lesbian overall girl. I'm glad you've moved beyond that. Though all lesbian overall girls will always be on your team.

Tonya said...

This was exactly what I needed to read today. Thanks, Libby. I would actually buy your self-help book if you ever wrote one! Happy Birthday! May the next 10 years bring you even more dumb luck happiness.

Jen said...

your post make me cry more and more.
aHappy Birthday!
Love you!

Sam said...

Amen, sister. I'm a little older than you, and have been thinking a lot of the same things myself.

Sarah Bellum said...

Happy birthday Libby! I'm drinking cheap read wine in your honor. I'm a good friend like that.

Susan said...

Hey, it's my birthday too! I hope you had a happy day.

Lesli said...

I would definitely buy your self-help book. And if you said that picture was taken yesterday, I would have believed you.

Princess Consuela Bananahammock said...

Well said, and beautifully written. And happy birthday!

Yeah, my sister told me just two days ago, "You know how to make God laugh? Make plans." That made me laugh good and hard. *sigh* And yet, I wouldn't change a thing.

Phil said...

Happy Birthday Libby! Why don't people make their goal list consist of just one item, "be happy"? Had you done that 10 years ago I would bet you'd feel like you've accomplished it all. I liked hearing your brief story of the path that life took you on.

Sunshinemeg said...

Happy birthday friend. Your post was beautiful in its own way. So much honesty, it is refreshing. I love you picture and I am so happy you have your daughter. Enjoy your day.

LCM said...

I can't remember if I was around for the actual birthday, but I remember the picture, the hairstyle and the dress...and Murphy of course. My 22 year old au pair whom I adore lives with us, and it's been a wonderful ride in practice parenting of a young twenty-something, the lesson of which is: Advice is futile.

happy birthday! Great post!!!

melistress said...

I'd love to see an after pic as well. Happy Birthday. Sometimes I want to go back to my 22 year old self as well...she might not have been so smart but she was a lot more carefree.

Ellen said...

Woah! Who is this new Libby? lol. Motherhood is doing wonderful things for you! Happy Birthday!

And I think I remember the overalls Murphy is talking about. lol.

Lulu said...

Happy Birthday! and this is very timely, as I just read about a 23-yr-old actress, interviewed in a magazine who said that 'Fear of growing old is just vanity."

Yeah. I thought that too, years ago, Miss McHugeFaker actress girl.

But anyway, you may not still be lesbian overall girl (whoever she was), but the spirit of your 25-year-old self comes through in your posts, only much better, due to the maturity and wisdom of time.

Or maybe it's due to staring at Meg for hours.

But whatever! You rock. :)

*Akilah Sakai* said...

Loved this post! Makes me not feel all icky 'cos I haven't done what I thought I would by this age.

Kelly said...

Happy Birthday. This hit home for me, as I did not end up where I planned either, but those plans can be overrated.

Aunt Juicebox said...

Happy Birthday! Well, belated, actually, but no less sincere. I hope the next year is a great one!

Thomas McGrath said...

It's interesting. 10 years ago is about how long ago I met you. I am very glad to see you happy and fulfilled.

Happy Belated Birthday!