Other Writings

25 Things in my 25th Year

I have a song from preschool stuck in my head today:
“Today is someone’s birthday, this I know.
Today is someone’s birthday, we like her so.
Today is someone’s birthday, who could it be?
Today is Amy’s birthday-ee”

Yup. Today I turn the big whopping 25. That’s about as much as I want to talk about it too. Last year when I wrote my birthday post “24 Things to Happen in my 24th year”, I had the very same feelings about getting older as I do this year. You just have to add 1 to 24 and subtract another year from the time I have left to cram everything in. From my post last year:

Today I’m celebrating my 24th birthday. As far as birthdays go, this has been the toughest for me to face. So many of my friends and family have said ‘Oh, 24 is no big deal… You’re young yet!… Wait until you turn 30, then you’ll have something to worry about…’ Yet 24 still seems unfair to me. I’m old enough to be a bone fide adult with a career and a house payment, but so much of life (having a family, establishing a community, reaching goals) is unchartered territory. I also thought I’d have much more accomplished at 24; there’s still so much good work left to do! It’s a bit overwhelming to be old enough to go at it alone, but be young enough to not know the way.

Don’t get me wrong, I had a fantastic 24th year. Full of fresh and exciting challenges including some freelancing and some new non-profit work I’m anxious to continue with. Full of good food and good meals with friends. Full of a blog that continues to exceed all of my wild and crazy expectations. I even made a dent on my list from last year, especially finding more time to spend eating and growing the local food I love most. But as always, time passes way faster than I’d like. I still feel the pressure that there’s much left for me to accomplish and even less room for error.

So this year, I’m creating a different kind of birthday list. I’ve still written my 25 aspirations for this year; a tradition is a tradition. But instead of plastering them up to regularly remind me, I’ve tucked them away until Birthday #26. Less focus on what I have or haven’t finished yet, and more focus on the moment. Maybe this time next year I will have finished some or all. Maybe not. It’s hard to say. What I do know is my 25th year needs to be focused less on accomplishments and more on being comfortable in my own skin.

I cringe when people say “life is about the small things.” It’s completely revolting for a Type-A-Anal, Overly-Ambitious, Anxiety-Prone, Irrationally Perfectionist person like me. Not one bone in my body likes to relax and just “live in the moment.” I’m so focused on analyzing/reflecting/unpacking the previous moment, efficiently multi-tasking in the current one, and strategically planning for best outcomes in the future, there’s no time for relaxing. That is until I turned 25.

This year–in every practical sense–my birthday list looks like this:

1. Let it be.

2-25. Repeat #1.

We’ll see how it goes. I’m guessing there will be a some good stories worth sharing along the way. Many thanks to all of you for being a part of Year 24 and for staying with me through 25.


  • S &A

    Happy Birthday, you are miles ahead of the rest of some on the things that really matter! We look forward to following you on to the next birthday and seeing where life takes you. All the best to you, have a great b-day!

  • liz | carpeseason

    Happy Birthday! From one type-A soul to another, best of luck with your list this year. Somehow I married a man whose modus operandi in life is to live the way you described on your list…and slowly but surely, he’s mellowing me out. Happy birthday!

    • Amy.Sippl

      So sweet!!! Thank you for the birthday wishes! I was out for a birthday dinner with friends and caught myself twice being stressed out. Already breaking the rules!! Looks like it’s going to be a long year!

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