This is 32.

Dear 22,
This is 32. And I'm fabulous.
See you sooner than you think.
p.s. You know that Rob guy in Journalism class? Turns out he's a pretty great husband and father.
p.p.s. Wear more sunscreen.

If only our future selves could give our present selves a heads up on what life is like in the future...

I never could have imagined at 22 what life would be like when the clock struck 9:06 p.m. on September 19, 2014 as I turned 32. That I'd have two beautiful daughters, as different from each other as can be, who are my world. That my relationships with my parents would be stronger and more cherished than ever. (Or that two of them would be LIVING with ME!) That my husband and I would treasure our nights in more than our nights out. That my career would fulfill me the way it does. That the best friends I had at 22 would be the exact same 10 years later. That I'd still be running. That I'd actually own a dog and love him like a family member. That I'd feel like I'm exactly where I'm supposed to be.

Turning an even number on birthdays has always been harder for me ...26, 28, (30 was surprising fine), but now, 32. Forgive me if your digits are higher, but 32 sounds soooo old!

Then, over the course of the weekend, I realized how much I like being 32.

I like that I have a work family that takes food as seriously as I do.

I like that my dad and I can have an adult chat about the past, present and future over lunch at our fav place.

I like that my mom still takes my birthday off of work, and wants to spend it treating me to a pedi and some shopping. And that now I'm the one embarrassing her by taking selfies everywhere we go.

I like that my husband knows my love of all things Mexican and makes sure I get some chips and salsa on my special day.

And that double fisting has taking on a whole new meaning.

I like that even though it's my birthday, I'd rather be doing something my children love.

(OK, Gabby did not love it so much.)

I like that my husband will still go to a romantic comedy with me even though he'd rather see anything but. (I love me some Jason Bateman!)

I like that my best friend knows I would appreciate her buying me a $.99 card vs. a $4.99 Hallmark ripoff.

I like that spending time with my family and friends is the best present of all.

You always hear people say things like, "Age is just a number." "You're only as old as you feel." "Don't regret growing older. It's a privilege denied to many."

The older I get the more I believe these things, but the more I have to remind myself of them. Amidst all the positivity above, I still get sad about my gray hairs, the mid-section that just doesn't and won't probably ever look like it did 10 years ago, and having to deal with heavy adult things. But in all honesty, I feel good. If I don't think of myself as "an age" I'm quite pleased with my life as I know it. In fact, I'd love to pause and live this year over and over again. But life goes on. So I will continually thank God for today. Because today I'm 32. And 32 ain't so bad.

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