December 1st. A pretty important day in my family if I do say so myself. 20 years ago I showed up in the world. Right now I don't feel old but when I think back to growing up I seem to remember thinking 20 was ancient. I'm not exactly sure what seven-year-old me thought I would be doing at this point in my life but I'm pretty sure she thought I would have more figured out then how to make the perfect morning coffee to get through the day.

I wonder if middle school Rachel thought she would be living in her own apartment by now or be working a job during college. Would she be surprised that my plans for my 20th birthday include brunch and then playing in a wind ensemble concert? Probably not come to think about it.

One thing I have a difficult time wrapping my head around is how I always wished to be older when I was a child, but now I'm am just trying to hold onto every second because each one seems to fly by before I am even able to process or appreciate it for what it was. It seems like there is a very fine line of being able to live in the moment, and I am still trying to find that balance.

Another thing that I have been thinking about is how it seems difficult for me to wrap my head around that my younger brother is also getting older and gaining more responsibilities just like I am. A few months ago he turned 16 and got his drivers license. While of course, it makes sense, I still can't help but think of the little baby that I held in the hospital the day he was born or the little five-year-old who would use frisbees as pretend steering wheels when we were in the car and would pretend to be the one driving.

Sort of related thought, the hightop chucks that I wore practically every day of high school and a large portion of college so far, I have been wearing that same pair of shoes for around a fifth of my life. Perks of being the same shoe size since you were 13 I guess.

My final thought of the reflection is one of hope and anticipation. I look back on these 20 years (or as many as I remember) and think of all the life changes that have taken place. I lived in three states, moved five times and attended six different schools. I experienced times of great joy, great sorrow, and plenty of time in the in between. I can only look forward with wonder to what the next 20 years will look like in my life. Of course, I don't want to rush them, but with each decision, I make and step on my academic path that I take I am slowly building the building blocks of the next 20 years of my life and beyond. So that, that is something to look forward to.