3-0 eve

hello lovelies. tomorrow is the big 3-0 birthday for me. i've been dreading anxious about it for a while. why? it's a new decade. a new chapter. a new number to identify with.

today on 3-0 eve, as i've dubbed it, i'm thinking about my 20s. the good, the bad and the ugly parts of my 20s. i thought i'd share a few highlights to say goodbye to my last decade. here goes nothing.  WARNING::this is a super wordy post. proceed with caution!!

20. it was 2002. i had just graduated AIT (army school) and was headed to my 1st duty station- germany! shortly after arriving in germany, i had to fly home because my grandmother passed away. it was a rough time for the whole family. i wore my uniform to the funeral and cried my eyes out. she was my last grandparent and i miss her dearly. there were irish pubs and techno music. there were crazy parties in the barracks. and i pulled so much guard duty i started to hate the army. and then i pulled more guard duty. i was deployed to kuwait.

21. i was wishing i was somewhere more amazing for my birthday, but i turned 21 in iraq, on my first tour of duty in a war zone. it was a year of ups and downs, losing fellow soldiers- RIP LBB, learning to stand up for myself as a woman in the military and trying not to get my ass shot off. daily.

22. i was back in germany and had just gotten orders to kentucky. i lost my damn mind (more on that some other time! ha) following a boy across the world. became a proud member of the screaming eagles. following in my father's footsteps. amazing.

23. i had bought my first house in the country. i was staring down the barrel of my second deployment and working my ass off to get my soldiers ready for the fight. shortly after my birthday i got married. what a stupid idea. (that's a whole other story though!) we lost a soldier- RIP Amanda. you are missed and thought of daily.

24. another birthday spent in iraq. our year tour of duty was almost finished and we were looking forward to getting home. my marriage was essentially over, just waiting to get back to the states to ensure its finality. what a great way to come home. ha!

25. i had just gotten out of the army after 6 years. i was unemployed and searching for a job as a 'veteran'.  i had started dating the love of my life. uber happy. life was good. job searching was long and arduous, but turned out to be fruitful when i landed my first contracting job in washington dc. good times.

26. another birthday in iraq. this time iraq was on our terms- as contractors. what a different world. we met some amazing people that year and really enjoyed the year because the hubs (still dating at the time) were there together. we took a trip home that year and took the hubs' family to orlando. 6 adults. 4 kids. universal studios. what a trip! so much fun, but exhausting! when we completed our year, we came home and got married. it was a small ceremony at the local historic courthouse. i wore a shiny short white dress and killer heels. it was bitter cold but i couldn't have been happier. i married the love of my life. my soulmate and best friend. we spent our honeymoon in savannah georgia in a quaint b&B and then headed to hawaii to spend time with my family and fall in love with the islands!

27. this was a glorious birthday in japan- we had arrived a few short months earlier and were attempting to get settled in yet another foreign country. we worked for an evil miser, and had some crappy fellow teachers, but there were some amazing fellow teachers too. we traveled all over our island. we white water rafted. we tasted every delicious pastry we could find. clearly we gained a few pounds ;) but totally worth it. we took a cross-island bike trip. we visited hiroshima. we went back to hawaii on our way home from japan. i got pregnant. we went to las vegas. we were heartbroken when i had a miscarriage in the middle of moving to texas. it was a rough year.

28. well, this year is a bit of a miserable blur. there were complications from the miscarriage shortly after my birthday, so i was in and out of the hospital all summer. the whole experience didn't help to make texas a better place to live- i was pretty miserable living there. just not my kind of place. i got a new job and worked my butt off. we took weekend trips to austin and san antonio and to a fantastic wildlife preserve. we tried to enjoy texas.

29. we moved to colorado. we found a house we wanted to build. we built the house. we bought the house. we lived in the house a few short months (3) before we were moving to germany. it was whirlwind. it was exhilarating. it was frustrating and it was fun. we met amazing friends- the type of friends who are friends for life. we hiked. we made it to the top of pikes peak. we adored shopping trips to denver. the mountain range was glorious. we had another miscarriage. it was heartbreaking once again. it was right before we were planning to move, so we pushed back our dates to ensure everything was going to be ok. we were sad to leave, but couldn't turn down the next amazing adventure in our lives. an overseas assignment. we got to germany. found an amazing flat to live in. we have met german friends that we enjoy spending time with. we are learning german (& bavarian- hawadere!!) and we are finding our groove here. i have thrown myself into running again and am enjoying learning the trails around our town.

my 20's were great. there was sadness and happiness, love and hate. i did a lot of growing up, learning by making stupid choices. i learned not to take the people in your life for granted- they might not be around tomorrow. i learned who my real friends are- the ones that take the time to contact me outside of  social media! (hint hint!) i laughed and cried and wondered often, "what in the hell am i doing?!" but all-in-all my 20s were fun and exciting. an adventure. now that i'm at the end of the post, i think i'm ready for the next 30 years. check back tomorrow for my 30 in my 30th year post!

good-bye 20s. it was fun. peace. xoxo, gg