I'm turning 38 today and I swear all I can think of when I see that number is — I'm 2 years away from 40! It reminds me of when I was a year shy of turning 30 and it lit this fire in me to start making big strides forward. So I switched careers, left my very first job of 8½ years for one that I actually loved, and I moved out to an apartment on my own, which was another first. I still live here to this day. And now, I'm getting that same feeling again of wanting to move forward but something tells me these things won't magically fall into place between now and the end of this year (although I'm certainly not opposed to it). But that's okay! I just want to put into words some future hopes for myself and recognize what has happened in my life already. 

So in honor of turning 38, I'm sharing 3 moments I'm hoping to one day experience and 8 pivotal moments in my life that have shaped who I am today

1. Buy a home: I really thought I would rent forever or at least until I got married and was ready to buy a home. But I realized, why do I need to wait for marriage or a significant other to be ready? Even though I don't want the responsibility of a huge house, I'm actively looking for a townhome to own. 

2. Get a cat:
 Is this weird to put on the list? Well, I don't care because it is something I truly want. I totally dream about having a beautiful townhome with a cat to come home to. 

3. Fall in love:
 Even though I am secure with my single status and feel content with my life, I'd be lying if I also didn't admit that falling in love is something I hope to experience one day. 

1. Discovering my love of reading: It was thanks to my dad that I fell in love with books as a young child and that love has stuck with me until now. 

2. Making a website for the first time: I made my first website at 14 years old and it was at this moment that I knew what I wanted to do with my life professionally. I guess I can thank Dawson's Creek for this one! (My first site was Pacey and Andie's Place on Geocities!)

3. Going away to college:
My parents were super overprotective and definitely wanted to keep me sheltered at home, which is why I knew I had to dorm for college. I love my family but it was so refreshing to not have them constantly looking over my shoulder. Plus, I met one of my very best friends there! But that taste of freedom showed me that not only could I take care of myself but I craved independence. 

4. Traveling out of the country for the first time: I hadn't done much traveling since my mom was afraid of planes and I didn't have anyone to travel with. Of my circle of friends at the time, not everyone was financially stable to take a big trip so I was just waiting for them. Then a talk with one of my cousins inspired me to stop waiting and just do it because I was ready. Another friend felt the same way too so we booked a trip to London and Paris together and it sparked a love of travel. 

5. Switching careers: Long story short, even though designing websites was my passion, I ended up being a web developer first due to a number of reasons. I got stuck in that role for far too long and when I finally made the switch to a web designer, I couldn't have been happier. 

6. Moving out to my own apartment: Here's another instance of when I waited for friends to be ready to move out and be my roommate. And again I thought, why am I waiting? I moved out on my own and it was 100% the right decision. I love having my own place and being able to make all the decisions without consulting anyone. 

7. Traveling solo for the first time:
I had this itch to travel in the second half of 2018 but no one was able to come with me so I decided to just go by myself and I booked a trip to London. It was definitely scary when I booked the ticket but as soon as I arrived at my destination, I was good. It was an amazing experience! I remember having this moment where I thought even if I never meet someone, I know I can make myself happy. The whole trip was just super empowering. 

8. Losing my mom:
I know this is a sad one to end on but it's probably the most important to me. My mom is pivotal to the person I am today. Even though we are completely different in almost every way, we share the same values because she's the person who taught them to me and showed me through example the importance of family, kindness, hard work, and generosity. And I've said before, in the aftermath, I can still live a happy life and laugh every day while co-existing with the grief that will always stay with me too. It's just a part of who I am now. 


Thank you for reading this post and letting me share my birthday reflections.
Tell me, do you get contemplative on your birthday?


  1. Happy birthday Rach! This is such a lovely post- and your last item had me crying<3

  2. Happy birthday 🎉🎁? I loved this post and wish you happiness!

  3. Happy Birthday, lovely post. <3

  4. Happy birthday!! We are just about the same age and I love reading your posts. I wish you all the best on your big day!


with love,