When I started writing this post during my birthday weekend, (its taken me a week and a half to get around to finishing it!) I was tucked into my bed, exhausted from a great weekend, present bags filled with gifts sprawled out across my bedroom floor, slowly-deflating balloons all around them, breathing in the smell of a dozen roses (thanks, zack!), and many, many, many texts/calls/posts/cards to respond to. I was so surrounded by love.
The weekend I turned 21 I got to celebrate in the exact way I wanted to… surrounded by the people I love.
It’s such a weird feeling to be 21. Maybe its because legally I can do just about anything I want (except renting a car…4 more years!), or because I’m really an adult now. But it definitely feels weird. I feel weird.
On almost every birthday, you have at least one person that asks, “So do you feel different? Do you feel older?” and 99.9% of the time my answer is, “Nope.” I mean, how could you feel different? You’ve only been 18 or 20 or whatever age for less than 24 hours when they ask, and that’s surely not long enough to feel a difference in your own age. But this year, my answer was an exclaimed “YES!” Because I did feel different — so different. And I felt older.
When I was 18, everyone told me I was gonna feel different/feel older since I was “legal” now. But… I didn’t really do anything or have the desire to do anything prior to turning 18 that I couldn’t do at 17. Then, when I turned 20, everyone asked if it felt weird being in my twenties, and it did. But, I almost didn’t really feel like being 20 was being “in my twenties” cause I was baaaarely a year older than 19. But now.. being 21, all of those things change. Now, I do feel different. Not only am I legally able to do just about anything, but I am officially in my twenties. And I’m not too sure how I feel about growing up quite yet (something I’ll have to blog about later…).
I think 21 is going to come with a lot of things: a lot of fun, a lot of change, a lot of opportunities, and a lot of responsibility, especially as a Christ-follower. You see, most kids my age celebrate 21 by getting crazy intoxicated, most often to the point that they cannot even recall what happened the night of their birthday. But knowing Christ, and knowing my body is a temple for the Holy Spirit, that wasn’t really something I was interested on my birthday weekend, and still isn’t something I’m interested in now. I’m excited to be able to enjoy a drink over a dinner or a glass of wine occasionally. But what I’m most excited for are the opportunities that will rise from being not like the typical 21 year-old. I know at some point in the future, someone will ask why I don’t ever get drunk, I’ll have to explain why. And oddly, I’m kind of (nervously) excited for that. I’m excited to explain that I answer to the Most High King, and that my body is only a rented space — one that does not belong to me to defile. I think being 21 and being a Christian is going to bring a lot of responsibility to hold up this standard that is set for me, and a lot of opportunity to share my heart for Christ when I uphold this standard.
21 is going to be such an incredible year… and I just cannot wait to see the challenges, the memories, and the growth that will come in the next 12 months.
Cheers to the 21st year!