Year of 21
I cannot believe this year is almost coming to an end. I'm enjoying being 21 and in my own little world, I would totally extend this year somehow, just so I don't have to turn 22 (sounds so silly I know) but don't we all wish we could stay young.
Some of my friends insist that age is nothing but a number. They don't understand when I make such a big deal out of turning a certain age. To them, age is just that, a NUMBER.
Being 21 has meant so much to me. In some cultures, it's the age where your parents give you "the key" and it's almost a like a little welcoming ritual to the "adult life/world." In my culture I have no idea what it's all about. However, growing up, I enviously watched all my siblings turn 21 and it seemed like such a milestone in all their lives. As I was the last born, it would be years until I would finally get to celebrate my 21st. In some ways it was a good thing because the drama queen in me gave it so much thought but nothing could have prepared me for how I ended up celebrating my 21st.
Firstly, I was in Australia, not in my home country (Zimbabwe) or with my parents this was kind of a low blow for me because ideally I would have loved to celebrate this auspicious occasion at home with my parents and the friends I grew up with but all in all being in Australia, was a blessing in its own. Secondly, it turned out to be a surprise party that I virtually had no say in but somehow the theme of a 1920's/Audrey Heprbun style that my friends and family organized, fit perfectly with what I would have wanted.
Prior to all this cuteness that was planned for me. I had already decided I wanted to go away for my birthday. I knew for sure, getting turnt in a club was not something I wanted to be doing for my 21st (although it ended up being that and so much more).
Instead of staying in sunny Brisbane, I went to Indonesia with my sister for 7 days. It was probably the best memory for me this year because I really needed some time out in a different environment. It also happened to be the destination where Elizabeth Gilbert, (one of my favorite writers) traveled to and ended up writing about it in her New York Times Best Selling book "Eat, Pray, Love." If you have read the book before, you might also have Indonesia written down on your bucket list or places to visit.
My experience in Indonesia was different, in a good way of course. It was filled with a few locals that couldn't resist shouting out love proposals to you in the street. It offered some of the best tourist entertainment and reasonably priced alcohol too (bonus for any student out there). I also discovered what it really meant to go broke but I had such a great time that I would do it all over again. Unfortunately, the photo's I managed to take, don't do my trip justice at all. Half the time I was too absorbed in the moment or (truth be told, I simply ran out of battery) but here are just a few "good" photo's I took with my phone.
I'm really happy with how I transitioned into my dream age (21). The extra person in me got to milk this whole birthday thing and instead of celebrating it for a day, I celebrated it for 2 weeks. Apart from all the travel and turning up, I am really happy with what I have accomplished so far. I am no where near where I REALLY want to be and that's okay. Sometimes you have to give yourself a little pep talk and remind yourself of all the cliche sayings and quotes like "Rome wasn't built in a day."
Sometimes I get so caught up, being so hard on myself that I fail to celebrate the little things I do right or the little achievements I make along the way. Since I was too busy either, celebrating my 21st, trying to get on top of my uni work or chasing my dreams, I really didn't take the time to pat myself on the back and say to myself "you are doing the best you can do, keep at it." While lots of people took the time to say this to me, I didn't and it wouldn't be fair for me to keep going and not acknowledge the pieces of me that stay up late at night working on something or the pieces of me that are afraid to put myself out there but do so anyways.
So here is to a great year and thanking everyone who made it bearable for me. I urge you to also take the time to pat yourself on the back for whatever achievements you have accomplished, big or small they ALL deserve to be praised and acknowledged by you.