I sat in the back of my yoga class, defeated. 20 minutes into a 60 minute class and I gave up. I was trying not to throw up, trying not to pass out, trying to ignore my limbs falling asleep when I stayed in a pose too long – I figured it was better to sit through the reminder of the class than do anything embarrassing. But also it felt so embarrassing to be the person to sit through the majority of a class, when I once was the girl in the front of the room working on her handstand.
I’ve been trying to force myself back into my old habits lately. Getting back into yoga after months with mono. Getting back into writing (hi, internet!) after months of staring at a screen – only to give up and scroll through Instagram. Getting back into… what, exactly? Or, should I say, who?
I turned 28 last week. It’s a weird age to turn, pretty innocuous, really. Late 20s officially start at 27 (so I’ve been told) and it’s not your last year of your 20s like 29. 28 is just…. there. It’s not a big deal. Except for me, it was supposed to be.
I thought I’d be moving to Nashville when I turned 28 (yes, I am that basic white girl). It was the one promise I made myself – if I was still single by 28, I’d pick up and move. Not because there’s anything wrong with being un-partnered at that age, but because I could. What would be stopping me? When I was 24 and visiting with a friend I devised this plan for myself: I knew I wasn’t ready to leave San Diego just yet, but at 28 – four whole years away! – a new place, a new adventure, a new life seemed like a good idea.
I thought I’d be graduating with my masters at 28. That was the plan when I enrolled in seminary two years ago. Two and a half years – 5 semesters! – and I’d be done. Easy peasy. I’d be 28 and a Master of Christian Thought and life would look so different.
I thought I’d be healthy. My 27th year started with yet another round of not-fun health news, after years of frustration. I thought last year was the last year. I thought I’d figure things out. I was dating a doctor, after all. There were so many things I expected to do when I got healthy, so many plans I made. The key word: when. I never considered an “if”.
I had these plans set for 28. And I know I know: if you want to make God laugh – tell her your plans. We don’t get to plan the big things in life, I’m learning that. I’m forever learning that, I should say – because I keep wanting to. We have no control over when we fall in love. Or with who. At least I didn’t. We have no control over what our physical bodies may or may not do. We have no control over other people’s choices and life plans. This past year was full of so much out of my control, so many plans interrupted – sometimes in the very best way. But also sometimes in the worst.
I never imagined at 28 I’d be planning a wedding, no longer in grad school, still figuring out my health. It’s so much good and so much bad that it feels strange to even say it all in one sentence. I’m getting married to the most amazing person I never even fathomed existed – why am I concerned about not moving to Nashville? My seminary left me, not the other way around – shouldn’t I be more angry than sad? It’s all so complicated. 28 just feels so complicated.
I’m just uncomfortable. That’s what I realize. As I’m sitting in the back of yoga class, I’m uncomfortable I can’t join in, uncomfortable I have to sit and watch while others participate. As I’m having trouble sleeping two nights later, my body is uncomfortable as muscles I haven’t used in a while scream at me every time I adjust. And as I turn 28, a year that was supposed to hold some milestones but now will hold others, I’m just uncomfortable.
And suddenly, it’s okay. Naming it makes it okay. It always does for me. They joke Enneagram 5s need to understand a feeling before they can feel it, and I am most definitely that cliche. It’s been a confusing week and a confusing year, and suddenly understanding that I simply am uncomfortable helps a lot. A whole lot.
Uncomfortable isn’t bad. It isn’t not excited. It isn’t upset. It isn’t sad. It’s just adjusting. It’s getting used to a new thing, that doesn’t feel like your thing quite yet. It’s the transition. And I really hate transitions. I’m not mad I’m not moving to Nashville this year. I wouldn’t want to, now – not without RJ. I’m not upset I’m not graduating this summer as much as I am bummed – and a little embarrassed, if I’m being honest. I’m not mad that my body… okay, that one I’m still making peace with, but it’s a work in process. When you’re simply uncomfortable – it’s more of a need to adjust than anger. Things just need to settle. Getting comfortable takes time.
I’m uncomfortable with how many of my dearest friends no longer live down the street from me. How life is busy and exhausting and sometimes people take a week to text back. Sometimes I take a week to text back. I’m uncomfortable with how long it takes to build a community – especially a shared community with your significant other – with busy schedules and busy lives. I’m uncomfortable with meshing two families into one, with building a family of our own when we each have scars and wounds and issues from before we met. I’m uncomfortable with the loss of my family of 4, the loss of my life as a single, the loss of the freedom of deciding things just for me – even as I’m so excited we grew (almost overnight) to a family of 6, excited to become a team with RJ, excited to make decisions and build a life together.
I’m uncomfortable with this transition – to a change that I want and said YES! to and am so excited for. But the transition is still hard. And I’m uncomfortable with the transition of changes that I didn’t choose and had no say in, and now simply have to live with. And I think it’s okay to be uncomfortable for a bit. I think it’s okay to allow yourself all the complicated joys and losses involved in being a human.
At least I’m trying to be okay with it. It’s complicated 😉