Collections from 24
"Should I have my quarter-life crisis now?!"
"I think 2020 already had it for you."
I keep laughing at this response from my sister because, TRULY, 2020 has been A YEAR.
Around January of this year, I really was having somewhat of a quarter-life crisis. I was in a panic over my purpose and felt like I had allowed myself to give up on dreaming big.
And then, the worldwide pandemic known as coronavirus hit, and together, we were all forced to press pause on our obsession with the future. Getting through the "right now" is all that mattered.
For me, 24 will always be linked to this wildly unpredictable year, so, in many ways, my reflections on this age will be directly linked to the lessons I learned from this collective crisis. And you know what? I don't hate it.
This year was refining, exposing, and a year where I felt one the quickest spurts of maturity....though, that may have something to do with my new gray hairs.
So instead of focusing on a quarter-life crisis, I want to reflect on some of the lessons I collected at 24 years old:
1. The number of followers next to your name is nothing to obsess over. I can't tell you how many times I've let myself track my "success" by the number of likes or followers I accumulate, which only served to frustrate me. I was reminded over and over this year that God is at work even when I cannot see it.
Someone recently DM'd me to say that she was looking for some bloggers to share with her younger sister who was starting to get interested in the influencer world of fashion and lifestyle content. She was looking for some girls that loved Jesus and would be a good influence on her little sister, and she thought of me!
And that right there is my WHOLE heart! My goal has always been to create a space where gals who might be interested in all the girly content could also be encouraged and pointed to Jesus. I can't even properly express how much of an honor it is that someone would entrust me to be an influence in their sister's life.
So, I hope that I carry this lesson into 25. Keep doing it for the ONE. Be faithful to the audience (big or small) God has entrusted to you.
2. I can still be captivated with purpose, without knowing what my goals for the next few years are. I can be diligent to serving right where God has me now. And actually, there are many ways to proclaim His glory without being face to face with someone in this era of social distancing.
3. You're gonna start showing signs of aging (dun dun dunnnnn). Don't hold yourself to unattainable beauty standards. A few wrinkles, some gray hairs - girl, you're still FABULOUS! Us dark-haired ladies are just gonna have to deal with that harsh contrast of some grays popping in. Get you a box of dye or just embrace it! Growing up is a gift. (Plus, a new skincare routine can be SO FUN!)
4. There's nothing like quarantine to make us feel lonely as heck. But here's the deal: don't spiral into toxic thoughts that no one likes you, that kind of mentality helps no one. Instead, put in the work to reach out. If there's someone you haven't spoken to in years, don't be afraid to shoot a quick text and set up a FaceTime date. You also never know when someone might just be needing a friendly reminder that you care about them.
5. Make time for light-hearted, ridiculous FUN. Listen, TikTok has been the best gift of 2020. Zach and I have laughed until we cried late into many nights. There's so much incredible content on there, and sometimes you need to put away the news and have a good laugh. 10/10 for my new favorite app.
6. Embrace those emotions. I spent way too many years afraid of any hint of sadness because it reminded me of long seasons of depression. I finally realized that feeling sad is OKAY. We can be in a place of hurting, but still bring it to Jesus. He already knows how we're truly feeling deep down, so we might as well let it out!
Now I know I can be sad, and it won't last forever. God is faithful and will carry us through!
7. "Learn to do good; seek justice; correct oppression;" - Isaiah 1:17. At 24, I learned that racism is still wickedly planted in our hearts and our nation. We've got to do everything we can to rush it out. We must stand up for justice. And not just silently, I have a voice, and I can use it to say: the lives of my black brothers and sisters MATTER. I have a voice to speak up against injustice when I see it. I have a voice to say, "I'm sorry" for when I hurt others with my ignorance. I have a voice, and I will use it. I hope I continue to grow in boldness at 25.
There's so much more I've learned that I'm still processing, but I can't wait to look back on this a year from now and see how God has moved in my life. I'm overwhelmed by how good He's been to me this year, despite all the difficult things I could've never predicted.
If you're in a season of hardship, I hope these little reminders encourage you and remind you that you are not alone, you will not be in that pit forever, and God will be faithful to show you His goodness. Every year, I write some lessons down, and as time passes and I revisit them, I can see God has always been with me. He's always teaching me new things. He's always reminding me how kind, generous, and loving He is. I can't wait to see where He'll take me in this new year!
25, here we go!!!