Last week, I turned 25.
Normally, I don’t do anything for my birthday. I don’t do parties or big celebrations. Maybe dinner and drinks with a couple of close friends. That’s about it.
But over the course of the last year or so, I’ve realized that I haven’t taken the time to celebrate things. I finished a graduate certificate and didn’t even really acknowledge it, I’ve been living halfway around the world for 9 months and haven’t really thought anything of it. I’m just doing something, and moving on to whatever’s next, not recognizing that I’ve accomplished anything.
And now, I’m looking back on the last year, five, 10, 20 years. And I’m thinking about all of those times I thought I wouldn’t get through something. And I’m thinking about how if you had asked 5 year old me, or even 18 year old me, where I would be at 25… I don’t know what I would have said. Definitely not Nepal. And I know part of me would be surprised that I made it this far.
Part of me would be surprised that I got through the stress, heartbreak, depression, anxiety, moves and changes. Part of me would be really amazed. Part of me would think I was insane.
And because I’ve been thinking about all of these things, 25 feels big.
It’s not necessarily anything special about the number, but about how I feel.
I feel like myself, and I feel like I can do anything.
So. I spent a lot of time thinking about what I wanted to do. How could I celebrate managing to survive 25 trips around the sun, how I could celebrate life.
I decided on something most people who know me well never expected me to do.
I went bungy jumping. Off a bridge, 160m above a river in the foothills of the Himalayas.
It wasn’t about the place, or the bridge, or even the jump, really. It was about letting go of one of my deepest fears, and letting go of all of those misconceptions and negative thoughts I ever had about myself. It was about being braver than I ever thought I could be.
I was scared, completely terrified actually. But I did it. I screamed the whole way down (rumor has it that my scream was so loud it killed a few fish). I absolutely hated it. Then, I loved it.
I might even go back and do it again one day.
We only have one life, there’s no point in wasting it sitting on the sidelines. Take the leap, even if it’s scary. You just might be surprised at what you can do.
Here’s to jumping into 25, and taking the time to celebrate life.