2005 is an anchor year. The year has a hold on me. In my head, I am 22-years old. I have just graduated college. I have just enough money to drive from Alaska (my home state) to Atlanta, Georgia, where I will study advertising copywriting. I know I will love a career in this industry. I don’t have enough sense to truly think through this decision. But, I have just enough sense to know that if I do consider all of my options and even begin to weigh pros and cons, I won’t make this choice, a choice that feels like adventure and fun.

In reality, right now, I am 34. I’ve grown timid in my decisions, mostly because I have more to lose than the boxes of books and the Ford Taurus they are loaded into. Every once and a while, I am reminded that it is no longer 2005 and I am no longer 22-years old. Here is a list.

Things That Remind Me It Is No Longer 2005 and I Am Not 22-Years Old:

  1. Every one of my children’s birthdays.
  2. Each and every one of my birthdays.
  3. I lost my wanderlust somewhere in Cincinnati.
  4. I no longer yearn to move to a different city or state.
  5. I no longer yearn to move all of my belonging every few years.
  6. The easy-going Midwestern attitude may have something to do with this.
  7. I have a lot more belongings, including the furniture that I so very much resisted.
  8. The top of my right foot hurts.
  9. My right shoulder feels rusty. Some days there are small pangs when I move it just so and I am trying to figure out if it is just the way I am sleeping.
  10. An alternative rock station is no longer preset on my car radio.
  11. I don’t buy CDs. Rarely do I purchase any form of music, for that matter.
  12. My college degree has my maiden name, which is now my middle name—a link to this degree and my past, perhaps.
  13. I haven’t had my Ford Taurus, my beloved first car, proudly purchased with my own money, since 2012.
  14. I drive a mini van.
  15. I really, really like my mini van. And it’s dual sliding doors. Trust me, they’re very convenient.
  16. I am beginning to yearn for the creative writing that I did in 2003-2005 in college. I want to do that again.
  17. If it was 2005, I wouldn’t have this desire for creative writing, because I would be doing it.
  18. I’ve held 2 full-time, permanent copywriting jobs. I now freelance.
  19. I’ve been making money at jobs that fall within what I consider a “career” for about 10 years.
  20. Having a career feels distinctly different than wanting a career.
  21. I know that there are seasons to life. Phases that are traversed. Like the open road, the dense forest slowly transforms into prairies fading into buildings and knots of interstates.
  22. Sometimes I wonder if this will be my new anchor year. A defining age that will demand comparison with the present.

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