Some might say I have just turned 36, on the other hand, my mother always reminds me that the age I have reached on my birthday marks the year that I’ve completed. And technically, she is right. I have now completed my 36th year of life and embarking on my 37th. In either case, my heart is overflowing with gratitude to be here, healthy, happy, evolving, and continuously discovering parts of myself.
Year 36 unfolded as a tapestry of incredible moments- moments that were incredibly joyous, incredibly overwhelming, incredibly difficult, incredibly destabilizing, and incredibly awakening. Moments that felt incredibly magical, heartwarming, confusing, isolating, core-shaking, and reinvigorating. Amidst it all feel incredibly grateful to have had yet another transformative year around the sun.
Some of you may recall my journey from last June when I bid farewell to Shanghai, my home of the past seven years. My departure was followed by a whirlwind of summer shenanigans in Trinidad, New York, and Europe, and I celebrated my birthday in the heart of New York last October. Two months later, I relocated to Bali, and five months after that, my partner and I moved to Sydney. Those who have followed my previous posts can imagine the strings attached to these significant life changes.
Libras are often labeled as indecisive, but I prefer to see this character trait as being open to change. And a trait that I wholeheartedly embraced over this past year of life. Indeed, change was abundant in location, but the most noteworthy change that took place during this year around the sun occurred from within. Most specifically, the tremendous act of unlearning to become and, most importantly, to be.
For years, I took pride in knowing who I was and remained steadfast in staying true to myself. Isn't that what all those Instagram quotes also encourage? 'Be true to yourself?' Life, however, has taught me that sometimes, holding onto who we are can prevent us from discovering more of ourselves.
The older I get, the more I acknowledge the importance of unlearning some of my core values- even the ones instilled by my parents and society. I have been on a relentless journey of unlearning, rediscovering, and surrendering to who I am in the present moment. It has not been an easy process, but it has been liberating and rewarding beyond my wildest imagination.
Over the past year of life, more than ever, I have stopped holding myself accountable for ‘knowing who I am and living in that truth,’ because the truth is, I am ever-evolving, and I refuse to confine myself to a single version of me for the rest of my life. I yearn to learn daily, lean into life's lessons, and let them transform me. I have fully embraced being true to myself by giving myself grace to be whomever I am becoming in each moment of my life- a big Libra vibe.
As I embark on the 37th year of my life, I embrace this ongoing journey of getting to know my ever-evolving self, and I will remain open to the process of unlearning, learning, and being. I will practice authenticity by being true to the self that I am in each moment. I will welcome life-changing experiences as a necessary path to growth and continue to seek out the many parts of myself that remain undiscovered.
Your Birthday Lady,
The journey through 37 begins...