1. tuesday was my not very anticipated birthday. woke up to breakfast in bed courtesy of niki and mom, and went out to dinner with mom, niki, anisha and nitisha. after dinner, the girls slept over and we stayed up talking until 6am. had a heart to heart with niki which was good. in addition, it was probably the first time nitisha and i sat down and had a conversation. anisha and i had fun like always. i woke up with her sleeping next to me on my single bed.

2. i don't feel 25, i don't act 25, and i certainly don't look 25, but here i am 25 years old and it just doesn't feel real. sometimes i wish i could just change the date on my birth certificate. apart from the disturbing reality that my age doesn't fit my life, i was also feeling pretty low...i wasn't where i wanted to be, who i wanted to be, and with who i wanted to be with.

3. last year around this time i was in goa hanging out with the girls and boys. it was during this time that i made several life altering decisions including that i wanted to move to india and live and work there longterm. that arranged marriages just weren't going to be my cup of tea. that my being able to adjust to life over there was God's confirmation that He really had called me and it wasn't my imagination. and the ways in which He provided for me strengthened my faith to know that my life was in His hands and that He wouldn't let me fall.

4. in my opinion, i've also matured a lot this year, made several deep rooted realizations that influenced the decisions i made, including the ones mentioned above. it was a period of letting go of preconceived notions and constantly feeling the need to humble myself. i added the 'in my opinion' earlier because every step that i thought i was taking forward, everyone else saw as a step backward. and even though it feels right now like the dream that i was fortunate enough to catch a glimpse of, has faded into the background, i believe that God is still at work and i still hope.

Benita Joy