This month, I celebrated my 30th birthday.
I had been looking forward to this birthday for quite a while. In January I began making plans regarding ways to celebrate, and those plans included a party – truly incredible when you consider that no party had been attempted in at least fifteen years due to health concerns.
There were good reasons for being excited about this milestone birthday. First and foremost, my twenties had some very difficult moments for me. In fact, for a large portion of my early twenties, it was not uncommon to utter silent prayers that this pain-filled life would soon be over. Despite keeping up a lifestyle that included full-time work I enjoyed and college courses during the evening, weekends and summer, I did not feel needed or particularly special. All I knew was that every day, the pain I was being forced to endure from Lyme disease was astronomical and never ending.
My second reason for being excited had to do with the fact that during my twenties, I went through a lot of “first” experiences.
First time I fell in love. First time I got my heart broken. First time I broke someone else’s heart. First good job. First move on my own. First time I wondered if I wouldn’t make rent that month. First time I went to my parent’s house for dinner, starving for a good meal. First time bills were sent to collection. First time I had to face the enormous costs of the emergency rooom at the local hospital. First time a dear and trusted friend showed their true colors and betrayed me. First time of being truly afraid of being fired at work. First car. First car payment. First car breakdown. First long-distance relationship. First time a boyfriend stayed the night. First time I payed for a personal vacation. First semester I was forced to cancel my college classes due to poor health. First crush on a professor. First time I got drunk. First time I experienced the death of a loved one. First time I experienced the death of a friend. First time I was ungrateful for voting privileges during a presidential election.
It was a goal of mine, after miraculously surviving my teenage years, to experience as much as possible during my twenties. I think I did alright. However, Lyme disease continued to break me, physically, emotionally and spiritually, on a daily basis. Life was a dark place until I met Bella.
It was not until meeting and adopting my rescue dog, Bella, that I actually felt purpose in life. Before, everything was an adventure, something to be dared despite the consequences. With the addition of Bella however, I first felt truly needed. She was broken as well from abuse and neglect. Caring for her required tremendous amounts of patience, love, and forgiveness. To be needed is a wonderful and powerful thing.
There was a lot to celebrate for my 30th! I had trips, visits and my party planned. And then, in the beginning of the month, I came down with a mysterious cold/flu-like ailment that absolutely refused to go away. Nearly the entire month of October was consumed with simply trying to beat this ailment. Because of poor health I had to make the difficult decision to cancel all of my major plans.
This month has not been easy. Life has not been easy. However, instead of big parties or out-of-town trips, I spent the majority of my birthday with my amazing Lyme wifey (my best friend). She and I have been through some tough times together and yet we have loved, forgiven and grown closer, despite our many flaws.
My birthday was also celebrated with Bella and immediate family members, all of whom have been here for me through thick and thin. Family, fur-baby, forever friend; with such a combination, my 30th truly could not have been more filled with love and joy.
Onwards to a new era!
May my thirties be a time where hard work and perseverance pay off in regards to my health, education and career. May family and friends experience healing of their own. May Bella be forever by my side, healthy and happy. And, may heaven bless the readers of my little blog, who have stuck by me for three incredible years!
Check out my other recent posts: