On my 20th birthday, a dear family friend said to me:
The best advice I can give you in your 20s is don't get married until you're 30.
I laughed a bit at the remark, but ultimately I found in it a deep and beautiful truth.
And what I have recently realized is that those words of wisdom were about so much more than not getting hitched too early.
They were a directive. To embrace life on my own terms. To make decisions for myself and noone else. To take advantage of the opportunities I was going to have for personal growth, discovery, and adventure.
To focus on my self, listen to my inner voice, and run down what I knew to be my Right Path.
That's not to say that I didn't allow myself to cultivate deep and lasting relationships with people. I learned about myself through those partnerships as much as I did on my solo adventures.
What mattered most, though, was not giving into the fears I had about what it meant to focus on myself.
- Who will I be on my own?
- What if I never find anything like this again?
- How can this ever work?
What mattered was deciding to leap even though I had no idea what the net below would feel like.
And trusting that the net even existed in the first place.