on turning 27.

So a week ago today, I turned 27. Weeks before my birthday, I had decided that outside of getting dinner and cocktails with Alex, I wasn’t looking to make a big thing of it. I didn’t want to plan and put together a celebration. That weekend promised to be a busy one (a housewarming party, dinner at a friend’s new apartment, and a bridal shower) and throwing in one more festivity sounded exhausting.

At least, that’s what I told my friends. I emphasized that I wasn’t looking forward to such a busy weekend and that in light of everything I had to do, celebrating my birthday wasn’t really a priority.  And it wasn’t, but not just for that reason. I also felt like celebrating was… unnecessary? Don’t get me wrong, I don’t feel like this every time my birthday comes around. When I turned 24, I didn’t feel a need to celebrate, so I didn’t. I went to Wicker Park Fest then went home and ordered my favorite dish from Cozy Noodle. When I turned 25, I went on vacation with my family and last year, I hung out with friends at a new bar/arcade.

So why was I left feeling so apathetic about 27? I can’t really put my finger on it. Maybe it’s a combination of work-related stress and the anxiety of apartment hunting. Maybe it was something else altogether. All I know is that even after I told my friends repeatedly I wasn’t planning a gathering of any kind, they insisted we at least do dinner and a few drinks.

So this Tuesday, I met up with them for dinner and beers. We eventually wandered over a nearby bar that happens to be one of my favorites in the area and had a few more. The night was filled with great conversation and laughs, not to mention a really ridiculous game of darts. I got home much later than I had planned to and woke up the next morning for work completely exhausted.

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But it was completely worth it. It was nice to break my usual routine of getting home, hitting the gym, and eating dinner in front of the TV, which is surprising for creature of habit like me. I’m glad my friends pushed for a low-key celebration, even if it was five days after my actual birthday. It makes me grateful to have people like them in my life. It’s also a nice reminder that not every birthday needs to be a big deal.

So here’s to 27. Here’s hoping this is the year I embrace life as it comes and appreciate every moment of it.


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