Today that whole family went on a lunch cruise for grandma's 80th birthday. 80 -- that's a lot of years. I'm only 24, but sometimes ... I feel that's old. But geez, I've got quite a ways to go to catch up with good 'ol gram. It makes me wonder ... what was she like when she was 24? What are any of us like? Am I going to care about completely different things as I mature versus what I care about now? Are my career aspirations going to change? Will I be interested in different sorts of art, food, culture, men?
Today I spoke with my cousin who just turned 32 ... she says her life has finally begun. At 32 she knows what she wants to do, she knows where she's going, and she knows who she wants to be. She spent her 20s trying to figure out who she was. She was engaged twice, moved 7 times, changed jobs about twice that, and has finally, at 32 years old, settled in her career, opened her own business, dumped the nonsense men, and taken a hold of her life. And she's soooo happy.
When I was 23 my goal was to finish college, get a good job, save up some money, move out to my own place, and establish my freelance business. Now, at 24, my goals are somewhat different. But then again, my opportunities to grow are so much greater since winning the crown. I wasn't planning on the wonderful things that becoming Miss Illinois USA would bring, but I want to embrace them with everything I've got. My goal at this current moment is to be in the top 15 at Miss USA. Being in the top 5 would be AMAZING, and winning would be a dream come true. That's what I want for myself. My hope for this pageant and competition is that it might help me discover my life's passions, and give me a chance to really find my calling. I already know that I enjoy being involved with people a lot more than being behind a computer, sitting in the background ... but maybe there's a way for me to incorporate both. I'm open to change, in fact ... I LOVE change and welcome it. I can't wait to see where life takes me from here, whatever it may be. As much as I hate not knowing the outcome of things like the Miss USA Pageant, I think it's so exciting to know that anything is possible!! I can't wait can't wait can't wait to get to Vegas. It's like this is the new chapter in my life book. I'm so excited to see what happens!