Monday, May 19, 2008

One year ago, on my 24th birthday, one of my life's fairy tales unfolded before my very eyes. The Fiance got down on a knee, presented me with the most incredibly beautiful ring I have ever seen, and asked me to be his wife. And saying yes was by far the best decision I've ever made.

At 24, I began planning a wedding. I took two classes in summer school, I worked at the same summer job I had worked at the 3 previous summers. I came home in August and began my second year of work at a job I didn't like.

At 24, I also made the second most important decision of my life. I chose to have an invasive neurosurgery that changed my life. I spent months recovering, I dealt with setbacks and pain. I fought through the fears, the physical therapy, the follow up tests and struggles and I can tell you beyond a shadow of doubt, that I am better today for having made that decision. My quality of life is better than it has ever been, I feel more like me than I have in years.

At 24, I faced a scare that most women my age will not face for another 20 years, if ever. I had a surgery that removed 1/4th of my breast. I received news that my chances of developing breast cancer are 5 times greater than the norm. I cried, I yelled, I prayed, I struggled, and ultimately, I learned and I accepted it. This is my life and I plan on being around for a really long time.

At 24, I struggled with doubts, fears, anxiety and arguably, some periods of depression. But I believe that I have come out ahead. I have learned, I have grown, I have become a person I want to be. I have taken control of my life and started making decisions for me. For my future.

At 24, I rediscovered myself. I began to look ahead instead of behind me. And though I've only lived a few hours as a 25 year old woman, I have a feeling that this might be the best year yet. Not because I can rent cars now or because I'm officially a half-century old (please stop reminding me of that), but because of what I have endured, because of all the things that happened at 24.

At 25, I will be marry the person that I love more than anything or anyone else in the universe. I will begin a new job, I will take the first real steps to get into a graduate program that will allow me to (eventually) do what I want to do. I will live my life and not take it for granted. I will be me and I will be happy.

24 was a year of trials and a year of growth. 25 is shaping up to be a year of beginnings. And I can't wait to see how everything turns out.


Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday!

Anna in IL

Ness said...

Happy Birthday!

It's good to take stock of where you've been, where you are and where you're going. You're ahead of the game as most people never figure this out. Enjoy life to the fullest!

Daisy, Just Daisy said...

Happy Birthday!! Enjoy 25!!

daisy said...

Happy Birthday! It sounds like you are on your way to an optimistic and productive year. If it makes you feel any better -- you are only a mere quarter of a century old! Have a great day, beautiful wedding, and more days of good health than not.

Lanny said...

Happy Birthday!

I got married at 25 too. It's a wonderful time to marry!

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Katie!!!! Here's to hoping 25 is even better than 24!!!

Anonymous said...

Happy birthday! I didn't get married at 25 but I did get engaged. I'm thinking 25 is going to be wonderful for you.

joanne said...

Wow, what a year. You are a survivor and an inspiration. Birthday cake for you!! 25 is good---I had my lovely daughter at 25, one of the best years of my life!

Happy Birthday ;)

Diana893 said...

HAPPPY BIRTHDAY!! Hope your day was wonderful!! And may 25 be the best year yet! Love ya!

Anonymous said...

You encountered at 24 more than many do in a lifetime. Seems to have made you stronger and more appreciative. Probably the best gift you'll get (aside from a shwimp plate at Parasol's)!

Moondance said...

Oh, Happy Belated Birthday, Katie!