Today, I turn twenty. It’s almost unbelievable that our bodies, for how fragile they are, can even hold up for that long. Nevertheless, two decades in these shoes and I thank Him for every minute in them. There are other people that deserve some thanks as well and today feels like great opportunity do so.
To those older than me: Thank you for knowingly, or unknowingly, helping to guide me as I’ve grown. As the oldest of my siblings, I’m accustomed to being the first one to try something new. Though I would be nervous going down an untraveled road, I took peace in knowing that I had people around me who had done it before. Thank you for never giving me an excuse to quit.
Also, thank you for all the work you’ve done, and will do in your lives. All my accomplishments have been built upon the work someone else has done. As Isaac Newton said, “If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.”
To those younger than me: Thank you for your spirit and reminding me that life is all perspective. I’m at an age where I acknowledge how short life really is - it boggles my mind that in just ten years I will be thirty with a completely different life than now. However, no matter how old I get, whenever I see you all working hard and enjoying life, it motivates me to do the same.
To those I call my peers: Thank you for being there to experience and share in the adventure. Having people in your life who are experiencing the same things at the same time as you is awesome. It is this shared experience that is the glue of our generation. As a new generation grows up, let us not forget the days of video cassettes, dial-up Internet, or phones with antennas. These memories are dear to me, as I’m sure they are to you.
To my family and girlfriend: Dear family: I love you guys. Brother, sisters, parents, cousins, grandparents, aunts, uncles, my dogs - unfaltering in support and providing nothing but love towards me even in failure. You guys are the most unique, crazy group of people I’ve ever met and I’m proud to call you all my own.
Dear girlfriend: I could not have asked Him for a more wonderful individual to share my life with. Seriously, you’re my best friend and you make me very, very happy.
To my God: Thank you for blessing me with the life I have and the people in it. Although I sometimes feel guilty for being so blessed when some have so little, let me only work harder to use my gifts in ways that will help others. Thank you for each day I get to wake up and experience your grace. Help me to be an even better echo of your message these next twenty years.
To you: Thank you for reading. It may be my birthday, but I hope you have, or make, an awesome day for you too.
—Saturday, 21 April 2012