24 on 24: One Lady-child’s per annum epiphanies


I have bid adieu to my 23 year old lady-child self. Naturally, I wanted to give these past 365 days their dues. What bursts of pure delight! What surprise, joy, exhaustion, adventure, and utterly [unexpectedly] awesome…

And so to mark my turning as many years as there are hours in a day, beers in a case, and donuts in a double-dozen, I give to you (dear readers) all my love, gratitude, and mis-punctuated wisdoms. Some are big, some are small, but all are written with the hope of sharing the next 24 years with you. You are my heart.

… *cool fading flashback effect*…

My 23rd year started at a grocery store. With me in an apron. Working behind a register. People were already buying cranberry sauce. One woman was yelling at me about “my president” paying for “poor people’s food”. Christmas music was playing. It was a miserable scene.

Lord, i was feelin’ all kinds of discouraged/trapped/unimaginative. I was living at home, having left all my college friends, and my college job, and my college town, and my mentors, and blah blah blah. I had no plan. No prospects. No idea what/when/how/what i’d do. I was hitting that “life is hard” wall.

But when I came home and walked through that door and saw my mother standing with a slice of cake, a glass of wine, and several episodes of Downton Abbey, I had


Epiphany #1-I am blessed. I bet there are plenty of lost-frightened-discouraged 23-year-old girls (and boys) all around the world not knowing what to do with their lives. I wish them all mothers who lovingly hold their hands and stroke their hair and believe so fiercely in their goodness. How lucky we are to have mothers and all their kind, considerate, and loving-human glory!


Epiphany #2- Strive to be the kind of person my loved ones {so dearly} believe I am. That is, why not believe in the best parts of myself?

Epiphany #3: Fun fact, I will never be without shortfalls. Ergo, Self-Deprecation is for Dummies. “It is easy to destroy, but takes effort to create”.

Epiphany #4: Life seems to be a series of shortfalls. The trick is trying to navigate them gracefully.

Epiphany #5: Graceful Navigation is tremendously improved by lady dates involving William Powell movies and bourbon. #classy

Epiphany #5: you can be an adult and use hashtags.

Epiphany#6: You cannot be an adult and use abbrevs. Unless you follow them up with super smarty words like “equivocate” or “flotsam”. #loophole

Epiphany#7: Find Mentors who are worthy of your admiration. Whether an Internet baking blogger, a novelist, a chemist, or a teacher; invest in heroes who are doing something. And let that something be good.  And let it inspire your own goodness.

Epiphany #8: When moving your life across the country, DOWNSIZE. Seriously. You don’t need your old philosophy books or your old high school senate shirts. Let it go. Let stuff go!


Epiphany #9: Making new friends is terrifying. But muscle through the sweaty palms and introduce yourself. You never know how a new friendship will snowball into a dear friendship.

Epiphany #10: Keep in Touch, It shows effort; it spreads love. Living in an exciting new place, it’s easy to get swept up in “how busy I am.” To my dear folks who’ve made my life wonderful, I want to tell you that I miss you terribly. I wish I could have 4-hour late night phone conversations with you all…


Epiphany #11: Never underestimate the power of a note. Letter writing hobbyists are going to save the world.

Epiphany #12: Anything can be a national holiday if you add “-fest” at the end of it. i.e. “Beerfest”, “Beardfest”, “Honkfest”, “Porchfest”, et. al. Fact: these are all genuine fests in Somerville.

Epiphany 13: I live in the coolest town in Massachusetts. Hands. Down.  Possibly the coolest town in America, also quite possibly the World.

Epiphany 14: I’m so glad I’m not 14 anymore.

Epiphany 15: Credit Cards are scary creatures. It’s best to keep them locked in a drawer and never use them. ever.

Epiphany 16: any day spent by the sea is a good day.

Epiphany 17: When someone asks, “Where do you want to go for lunch?” the answer is “ Lobster Sandos”. Always.


Epiphany 18: If Lobster Sandwiches are not an option, the next answer is “Dumplings at Gourmet Dumpling House”. Obviously.


Epiphany19: Temp agencies are a buncha hacks

Epiphany 20: You can seize opportunities you create yourself.

Epiphany 21: be nice to your bus drivers and the homeless people who talk to you on the train.

Epiphany 22: be nice to your baristas, your bartenders, and your wait staff.

Epiphany 23: Volunteer when you can. Whether for a Craft Beer Festival or an ESL tutoring class, it’s so rewarding, hilarious, inspiring, and  fun. Your community is what you make of it. And if you make it awesome, well then…

Epiphany 24: Say thank you, I love you, and more please. Ev’ry single day.