Letters From a Young Catholic

My reflections as a Catholic young adult passionate about the Faith, seeking to grow in knowledge and understanding of God and discerning the will of the Lord in my life.

Monday, July 31, 2006

Twenty-one? Apparently.

Today I turn twenty-one years old. It's not exactly a milestone birthday (well, at least in Canada) but it's still hard to believe that I'm that old. Ok, I know that half the people reading my blog may resent that comment, but what I mean is that I'm really not a kid anymore. I can't even pretend to be a kid anymore. I guess I've got to face the reality that I'm "all grown up" now, although I know a few people who may not agree. For instance, my dad claims that the adult brain isn't fully formed until the mid-twenties so I guess I still have some growing up to do. The fact of the matter is, I don't feel grown up. In some ways I feel older than twenty-one but in many other ways I feel like I'm seven or eight years old. I sitll have a lot of work to do on the whole maturity thing. I guess you eat, you sleep, you live and you learn, and one day you wake up and, whether you like it or not, you're twenty-one.

Looking back on the past twenty-one years of my life I realize that I've been incredibly blessed. Probably in more ways than I even recognize. God has been incredibly gracious with me. It kind of makes me a little scared when I think about it though because I know that "every one to whom much is given, of him will much be required." (Lk 12:48)

I've had a lot of fun over the past twenty-one years too, including many memorable experiences. I went on an unforgetable trans-Canada road trip with my family when I was five. In grade ten I spent half the school year in Germany participating in a student exchange and made many friends there with whom I'm still in contact. I spent my first year of university studying in a castle in England. I travelled to Rome for Holy Week in 2004 with some friends from Germany. I spent a summer working as a camp counsellor and lifeguard at a summer camp for inner city kids with physical and mental disabilities in New York. I attended World Youth Day in Germany with my sister. For these and many other wonderful experiences I've had over the past twenty-one years I am truly grateful.

And so, I'm twenty-one. Where does that leave me? Well, I'll be graduating from university with a Bachelor of Arts with a double major in Modern Languages (focused on Spanish and French Literature) and Christianity & Culture (focused on Catholic Theological Studies) nine months from now (Ah! That's scary!). I've really enjoyed the past three years of university and I'm not sick of studying yet so I figure the logical conclusion would be to continue on with my studies. Now, that being said, what is logical and seems to make sense to me rarely fits into God's plans. He seems to have a sense of humour. So, I guess we'll just have to wait and see. . . I'm not too worried though. God has gotten me this far, I trust that he'll point me in the right direction.

As a side-note, one thing I never really understood as a kid was why birthdays celebrate the person who was born rather than the person who gave birth to them. When I was little I'd often be puzzled by this and I'd think to myself, "It doesn't take much effort on my part to get to my next birthday but it sure takes a lot of effort on my parents part to get me there." So on that note, I'd like to thank my mom and my dad for getting me to yet another birthday. They don't get all the credit though, they've got some pretty solid back-up from the Holy Trinity, the Blessed Virgin Mary, my guardian angel, and the saints.