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  • Three days before I turned 27, my mother raced from the kitchen, saying that she got something for me. When she came back, she placed a medium sized ruby plush heart in my hands.

    "Now you can squeeze it while you're reading or writing, and get out all that stress and frustration."

    I smiled, eying it amused at this random gift. But I think I've decided that this is the best gift I've received. With a new age often comes aimless thoughts about life, and it's direction. I'm thankful to the Lord for guiding me, and promising to continue to, even as the path seems impenetrable sometimes. I've decided that 27, for me, means scaling down a little. It means pursuing my dreams all the more diligently, as time is a radiant pearl that I cannot afford to lose. It means growing more serious about my direction, about the things I do, cherishing people I meet, and new moments I'm blessed to have. It's looking at the love that Jesus gives, and shows through everyone we know and don't know.

    I wanted so much for this birthday. To get dressed up, to do this or that. As time passed, I shrugged my shoulders, knowing inside that the best moments are those unplanned. Mom giving me this heart showed me how much I take my family and others in my life for granted. I thought about how blessed I am to make it to another year. How the first person to wish me a Happy Birthday, was my 75 year old Grandma who battled cancer this year and won. About Jesus making a miracle out of her...and us. About the simple things that I overlook as my head peers over the side of the mountain for something different. About how not to let my heart harden in pursuit of useless people | places | things, and instead, let it be soft and pliable. Willing to experience. This year, I'm going to stop thinking about the addition, and think about the one. If the only thing I ever have, is the assurance of God's love, and the love/support of my family and friends...surely this is enough.

    And so, during my first hour of a new age, I wrote the first lesson that I had learned so far:
    "It's not always about you."
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