The Age Issue.

It's funny. I don't feel 24. And perhaps that's because I've never been 24 and the feeling of it will settle into my skin as the next 365 days wear on. Sometimes, I feel older. The kind of older that comes with experiencing life at a faster pace than a lot of people my age. Sometimes, I feel way too young for the things I'm doing, especially when people have the habit of telling me so. Sometimes I feel far removed from the younger me, the adolescent me that felt quiet and sensitive and frizzy-haired. Sometimes I am her again, and the present feels like an alternate universe I stepped into, unknowingly, as I opened my closet to get dressed for school.

So what advice can I give myself as I step into a new year?

I think,

given the unpredictability of the present,
given the patience required in this stage of waiting and growing,
given the fact that I am now officially 24 years old and I do not have things figured out as 14-year-old me might have expected,

the thing I must do is learn.

I don't want to have things figured out. I want to stay curious and hungry and restless enough to want to learn. I want to read and reflect and write and ask questions and search and pray so that the ideas and the answers and the possibilities keep coming. I want to begin each day with anticipation for what I will discover that day, understanding that whatever it is will not be the whole puzzle, but merely one more piece.

Learning is my motivation to live.


Here are a few posts that taught me something this week:

"I wonder if I'm still a writer or a content creator." And 4 other things that I wish I didn't have in common with every other writer/blogger on the planet.

Remember this post? Here's another beautiful essay about the Fading Art of Letter Writing.

We've sheared the textile of our own lives. And it's time to put down the scissors.

[Thanks Tyler for the great links yesterday!]

[Image via]


Clifford Bailey said...

The love of learning for the sake of learning is the secret of eternal youth.  Seven years your senior I still feel too young to handle a lot of the things I'm entrusted with, but it's not based on anything I've done that was extraordinary - at least not to me; it's just based on actions I perform being me.  That's another vital component: no matter what, stay true to your self.

Tyler Braun said...

You're very welcome. Enjoy celebrating your birthday all weekend. That's the benefit of a Friday birthday this year :)

Abigail Smith said...

Love the quote! "Learning is a motivation to live." -- such wisdom girl. Happy Birthday! =)

Candice Jenee' said...

This is great! I love learning as well, and being months into 23 years old, I still am not sure I feel older, or know what to expect being 23 even though it's almost half over. But, what I do know is that I am learning. 

Though not always by choice, I am learning to live a free life, a life that can slowly be figured out (though, I somehow doubt I will ever have it as figured out as my 14 year old self would have liked...)

You write so honestly. It's nice to see your heart in your posts.


TGL said...

I remember feeling old at 23. 

I must tell you though. There are moments when I feel 85 and others when I feel 5. That would make me 40 on average. 

Terrifying thought

On another note, if that is your wish, I hope that this year you find a greater desire to learn, and by extension, to live.

alli said...

Happy birthday, I hope it was wonderful! This is a great post, too - I'm turning 25 this month and it feels kind of momentous (like: how did this happen and where are my 20s going?!). I love your advice to keep on learning and not feel pressured to have things "figured out." God has the important stuff figured out for us!

CaJoh said...

Age, they say is relevant. It all depends upon how relevant you feel about your age that makes it what it is. I know that I have always felt older than my peers, and yet there are things that I am reminded of that I am completely inexperienced in. I guess I wax about age since I too had a birthday. Happy birthday to someone who has the curiosity of a child and the wisdom of an elder.

Rachel McGowan said...

"learning is my motivation to live." YUM. love.

Bethany Grafton said...

'learning is my motivation to live.' i love that! you have inspired me.

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