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I am riding high, at the moment, from a fabulous conversation with my little brother about writing and books. I am tickled that I get to know him, love him, and witness him unfold. Plus, we laugh our asses off together, which is always a fantastic thing as far as I am concerned.

I love the people in my life. I am extraordinarily blessed to know some of the most beautiful characters to walk this earth. And, to continue to meet new ones.

I have now had two birthday dinners, a birthday brunch and a birthday roller coaster ride, and my birthday isn’t until Saturday. I’ve already celebrated way more than I have in years. I never would have imagined this five weeks ago as I was driving into my new town. Life is really fucking funny sometimes.

I am sitting with a lot these days. It’s a mixed bag. I am struggling with shame, not knowing if it really is okay to be me. I am discovering my own strength and joy. I am having to let things and people go, and feeling the grief that comes with that. I am uncomfortable. I am panicked. I am breathing deeply some moments and in others feeling like I can’t breath at all. I am simultaneously a complete mess and more okay than I have ever been. It’s a weird fucking place to be.

I keep returning to this poem by Rumi. I found and purchased a print of it online earlier this week and will be framing it to add to the wall in my office. In the poem he talks about contracting and expanding. How without both, we would be stuck. This is the dance that I think makes me so incredibly uncomfortable. The constant and continual movement. This, I think, is also just what it means to be alive. To be awake and present in my life. I hate it. There is a part of me that absolutely despises it. I feel so awkward in it. So tremulous and unsure. And, it is the only place I can be.

I am going to be thirty-four years old this Saturday, and I feel like my life is just beginning.