Ode to Twenties
This time of my twenties was involved a lot of growing and adjusting, and a lot of tired nights.
A lot of changes happened this year! A few weeks after my birthday, I graduated from BYU, moved home for about three weeks to prepare for my wedding, got hitched in May, and then promptly moved to Oklahoma to begin grad school and married life.
A few month into 23, I got to finally go to Graceland and get as close to Elvis as physically possible.
Twenty-three was an interesting year. Though it started out as an exciting whirlwind, it had its challenges. I was sad to move to Tulsa. Plus, going from dating at BYU to being married far from home or anything familiar was a big adjustment. Jordan and I didn't have the nice transitional period of being married while still at BYU, which was our relationship's original habitat. Instead, it felt like a million changes at once. It was tough on my 23 year old soul.
After some time, I did come to appreciate OU-Tulsa, which was very different than BYU. In January, I started my practicum as an actual therapist for adults. While I enjoyed it and learned a lot, I often felt like a little kid playing dress up. I always winced when someone asked me my age and would respond by saying, "Oh, I'm older than I look." For the first time in a long time, I was actually looking a little forward to getting older.
Pictures from my actual 24th birthday
Twenty-three was a little challenging, but 24 was TOUGH. This was the year that I graduated with my MSW and got a job as a full-time children's mental health counselor. For the first six months of my career, I dreaded going to work everyday. It was so draining. So challenging. I cried a few times from being overwhelmed and questioned all my academic decisions. Plus, the whole paid vacation limitation was hard for me. I was so homesick and had to carefully juggle my vacation time to arrange to see my family. Luckily, after a while, I dreaded work a little less. I became increasingly confidant in my work and started to enjoy it ....sometimes.
Plus, when I was 24, I got to do some cool stuff, too. We did a church history tour with my parents, Jordan and I went to Branson with his parents, and we went on a last minute weekend get-away to Kansas City, just for fun. This was also the year that I got to take Jordan to our family's traditional huge Thanksgiving in Boise. This was the final one, as we stopped the tradition after my grandfather passed away. I'm so glad Jordan got to go to one.
This was not a particularly noteworthy age, aside from some awesome traveling. We went on a Caribbean cruise for our two year anniversary, as well as Disneyland with my whole family. As with every other age, I visited Seattle once or twice.
I continued to progress as a therapist during this year, and I continued to be exhausted by it.
The biggest trial of this age was brought to me by my kidney. I had to have minor surgery that ended up being absolutely terrible (See blog post from January 2012). I remember thinking that with the pain I was experiencing from kidney surgery recovery was kicking my butt so badly, childbirth was going to be a nightmare. It turns out that my kidney procedure and recovery was DEFINITELY worse than childbirth. Yeesh.
This was a pretty good year. It had some fantastic highs and a few disappointing lows.
In my career, I was able to FINALLY complete all the necessary clinical hours that I needed for my LCSW. I also took and passed the clinical test and officially became an LCSW. Holla! In my work, I continued to get better and better as a therapist, and was even offered some temporary positions due to my successes that I was experiencing. It was very validating. When I gave my supervisor my notice of leave, she told me that I was an employee that the supervisors could see as a future supervisor for our area of the agency. It made leaving my job that much harder, as I felt as though I would be starting fresh, but I ended up not working after I left this particular job anyway!
The reason that I left my career at 26 was because this was the year that Jordan graduated from PA school, accepted a job in OKC, and we moved there in January. I actually really liked taking a few months off of work. It felt good to relax and focus on my physical health. During this hiatus from work, I really focused on exercising and got in the best shape of my 20's...not that I was in body builder shape or anything, but I certainly made strength progress.
This was a hard year for my body, too. Shortly after turning 26, we decided to start trying to have a baby. After six unsuccessful months, I was able to get pregnant, only to painfully miscarry. I spent the rest of 26 desperately trying to ovulate once again without any luck.
My favorite trip at 26 was our lovely Christmas in Vermont to visit my brother and his family. We had a blast and enjoyed the beautiful East Coast snow. We still talk about how much fun that trip was.
Last, but not least, at 26 I was able to be in the same room as Jim Gaffigan!