I've always had a thing for birthdays. As a child, I mostly cared about my own birthday, waiting until it was finally there -a bit after Christmas, just a few days after the holidays. I remember being impatient and obsessively counting-down the days: "3 days to go, 2, tomorrow, TODAY". Growing up, I started feeling the same enthusiasm for my favourite people's birthdays. As if it were a chance for me to remember our best moments, how we had grown since their last birthday, the stronger bond we had comparing to last year or the year before. To get to experience this feeling of fulfilment all over again.
25 used to seem so far away and SO ridiculously grown-up. On my birthday, I'd sit and imagine everything I'd have done by the age of 25 -I guess I've always loved making lists as much as I do now. And here I am. 25. And I've done so much less. And I've done so much more. Life has worked on the most unexpected ways -and I worked along: sometimes choosing the safer paths, but usually following the ones that didn't show what was next; the surprising ones, that were challenging my instincts and teaching me to embrace changes. And I did. And I would do it all over again. That's what it's all about; changing and growing up and trying to do it with dignity or at least a smile on your face. A chance of auto-evaluation, a reward for everything that you've done right, a lesson for whatever it is you've done wrong; a reminder that there's more ahead of you and that you really can make it through.
I am thankful for every little accomplishment, for every detail of each day that proved it was worth it. I am grateful for every new friend that I've made and for every childhood or adolescence friend that's still here, laughing with me for the randomest of reasons until we're out of breath -even if it is through a skype session or via facebook messenger. I'm glad for the good times and I realise there's many of them. But I'm also aware of the importance of the bad ones. I cherish the little -or greater- moments of stress or fear or sadness. For without them, the better moments would just seem dull. It's the hard times that help you grow, anyway.
Thank you, all.