In what seems like a blink of an eye, I’ve found myself in a brand new decade of life. I can barely remember what it felt like to turn 20 or what I did to celebrate it – time passes so fast. Is this what adulthood consists of? A slightly incoherent collection of memories that all seem to run together? That’s a strong possibility but the memory of turning 30 will remain with me not because I did something extremely out of the ordinary but because the weekend leading up to it consisted of multiple significant events that reminded me of how deeply I am loved.

A group of friends rolled into Houston on a cool Friday evening to kick off the festivities. We camped around a gorgeous townhouse and shared food, stories, laughs, and memories. The next day we cooked breakfast as a group like we often do on our trips then spent the day escaping rooms and taking long walks in Midtown. That evening we cleaned ourselves up, ate more than our stomachs could handle, then braved the elements for a night on the town. I’ve got to note that only half of our group made it out after dinner because, let’s face it, going out after 11PM at this age takes a lot of work. Had it not been for my birthday I probably would have stayed indoor as well. At midnight I took a glance at the clock on the Uber driver’s dash. I was officially 30, secretly fighting off sleep somewhere around downtown. I said a silent prayer of thanksgiving then played throwback video games and danced obnoxiously to keep the cold away. We finished the weekend off with church (one of my favorite moments), brunch, and cake. Lots of cake. We said our goodbyes and I reminisced on all of the sweetness of the weekend. I felt nothing but gratitude to Chris for working tirelessly to plan the perfect birthday shindig for me despite everything on his plate and for sweet friends that spent their time with me. My soul needed all of the good vibes the weekend gave me.

 

Lounging on my couch that evening, after taking a gazillion pictures with my gold balloons, I wondered why I avoided talking about turning thirty and stifling excitement over my birthday weekend in the first place. I tend to avoid celebrating myself and like to deflect attention away from myself in general, but thank God I didn’t this time around. My birthday weekend was so much bigger than simply celebrating my life. It gave us another opportunity to come together and share bits of ourselves. We shared our strengths, passions, and tribulations with each other with reassuring candor. Perhaps that was the point of it all and what I needed the most. To share myself with people I love and revel in the goodness that comes out of us coming together. What a lovely present that is.