So I have reached the new 20 and will turn 30 on December 24th at 11:11PM to be exact! I was getting pretty emotional the other day lying in bed and couldn’t sleep thinking back about all the ups and downs I have been through. Sometimes I still can’t believe how far I have gotten and am truly very excited to see what lies ahead. The song above is definitely one of those songs that “sings” my song of life. Here goes a list of what the last decade of my life was. I warmly welcome another decade- and will inhale each change and moment, because my twenties sure ran past me. Happy (advanced) 30th Birthday to me! It’s definitely an emotional one and a special marker of my life!
1. I turned 21 of course. For me it was a big thing because I never had a fake ID and I seriously did not start drinking until I turned 21. It was one of those exciting moments because I was pretty innocent to all that other stuff! Nowadays, I think people turn 21 and say “been there and done that” all the time.
2. When I was 20-21, I reunited with the love of my life. If turning 21 and being able to go out was a new excitement for me, Dexter was definitely brought into my life at the right moment. Although he was one of those that have been there and done that since he was probably 10 years old, I think my innocence to it all kinda attracted him. Getting re-connected with him has definitely changed my life. He took me to so many trips and introduced me to so many things. Simply, he taught me how to be generous and genuine! I’m truly lucky and blessed and proudly say that to everyone that knows him!
3. 21 was also a tough time in regard to nursing school. I had been currently working for Jewel Food for 5 years and truly enjoyed my job at the service desk. I was also a year and a half away from graduating nursing school. I really wanted to work at the hospital to gain experience in the one thing I was going to do for the rest of my life. So I was going to school full-time and working two jobs that I both loved. I also needed them both to pay for my car and bills and SCHOOL! That’s when Dexter’s generosity really proved to me that he loved me a whole bunch!
4. I graduated nursing school when I was 22. It was a really proud moment to have actually accomplished a goal that I had ever since I could remember. I think I was truly meant to be a nurse. There are no nurses in my family and I had never been to the hospital, but as a child, when people asked me what I wanted to be, my response was always the same- a nurse! I’m glad I made that choice, because I couldn’t have picked a better career that would allow me to work 3 days a week and go on so many vacations and still be able to make a good living for my family!
5. I took my NCLEX and passed and officially became a nurse in 2003! I was so nervous and thought I wouldn’t be able to pass, but thankfully with one month of studying like crazy- I did it!
6. I had one of my first real experience of death in more ways than one. It was my first experience of watching someone dying and it was my first experience of having someone dying in my family. It is a day I will not forget and it was actually the day that I took my NCLEX exam. I know Tita Ludy was there to help me pass my exam. We miss you Tita!
7. I moved out and moved in with Dexter in 2003, the same year I got my first “real job” as a nurse. Talk about moving quickly, huh? It was a big life changer- but a very positive one. It was a great and memorable experience building our first house from scratch.
8. On July 15, 2004 I said YES when Dexter proposed to me at Geja’s Cafe in Chicago after spending a beautiful day together! The day was perfect and I can still remember all the details.
9. A little over a year of planning and settling all the details, we got married on August 13th, 2005. Hands down, one of the best times of my life. I don’t regret any part of it and as much as it cost in the end- it was well worth every single penny spent! We then went to Playa del Carmen Mexico for a week. It was HEAVEN and it became my favorite place EVER. We have yet to come back there, but i think we’re saving it for a special time because it is a very special place for us. After a week in Playa, we went on a week long cruise to the bahamas and we had a blast! Our honeymoon is one of those special times in our life. Memorable!
10. Not very many people can say that they know the exact time of when they got pregnant and in what position or what was said after “being impregnated” unless you are ME! To make a VERY long story short I can get pregnant as easily as you say GO. My bun in the oven started baking on our trip to the Philippines October 2005! HAHAHA!
11. Jasmyne was born July 25th. It wasn’t according to plan, but I’m so glad I didn’t stick with the books. She has been the best present I ever received. Having my first baby and going through the process of labor and delivery was BAD, but well worth it in the end.
12. Amidst a looming recession, we were able to sell our townhome and lost just a little bit of money on it. We took the first offer and said DEAL! With a newborn baby in hand, we were on a mission to move into an apartment far far away. It was one of the most stressful things I have had to deal with- if not the most stressful thing I’ve ever had to do in all my life.
13. July 12, 2007 we closed on our 2nd (and current home) after a stressful year of living in a small apartment with my whole family and a newborn to top it all off. That only means that we had to pack up again and move and start from scratch all over again.
14. Just when we thought we couldn’t get any busier, we decided out of the blue while we were talking on our way to work that we wanted to have another baby. This talk occured one day after New Year’s. I stopped taking my pills. I missed my period that month and got a positive test the third week of January. I told you I could get pregnant as fast as you say GO!
15. We spent our first vacation (and first time being away from Jasmyne for more than 4 hours) in Vegas 2008 for our anniversary. We had fun, but I was in tears every single day missing my Jasmyne pooper who refused to talk to me the whole time we were there.
16. October 26th- our next angel Janelle was born. It was an easy delivery, but PAINFUL labor. By the time I got to the hospital I was 6cm dilated. The car ride going to the hospital was probably one I will not forget. It was like a scene from a movie where the wife about to have a baby is screaming at her husband at 3am to get there NOW!
17. February 2009 I got my nose pierced! I removed it like 5 months later, but it was one of those things where I decided to have one and did it a day later. That’s how it works if you see the trend above!
18. Jasmyne starts Pre-school and my husband and I manage to have a 3 year old and a one year old by October 2009. It has been tough, but the tough times is slowly coming to an end. Slowly, but surely!
19. My grandma passes away in another one of those death experiences I will not forget. She was in hospice and it was very challenging for me. I went from my first death experience with my Tita Ludy, to all of a sudden being experienced with death by the time my Lola passed. It’s so hard to sometimes separate the emotions of going though the motions of hospice because i deal with death and dying all the time. So telling my family and talking about hospice in the early stages was so easy for me. I knew it was the right decision at the time. It was one of those things that definitely got me in the end and when I got the text message from my dad that she was gone, I just lost it at work. It has taught me that in life, you should tell people how you feel and not to hold grudges. Sometimes it will be too late to talk to someone. Thankfully for me, it was close, but not close enough!
There is my last decade in a nutshell! WoW! I was in tears just thinking of all my little and big life events. The constant in it is my family- especially my understanding and loving husband. You all may think it’s cheesy, but I have been truly blessed. I pray for continued blessings for more years to come!
HAPPY HOLIDAYS EVERYONE!