You Can Learn a lot of Interesting Things in 46 Years

I’m doing things differently for my birthday this year.

When I turned to 29, I was so busy comparing myself to others I thought I hadn’t achieved much. When I turned 35, I wondered why I hadn’t lived up to my potential. And when I turned 40, life got in the way of celebrating.

But I’m turning 46 this week, and instead of worrying about what I may or may not have achieved, I’m embracing everything I’ve learned.

I’m not talking about facts or skills. I’m talking about all the things I’ve learned by really living life. Those lessons that came from experience. Those lessons that have shaped who I am.

 trina as a babyFive Facts Before Age Five

1. Screaming, whining and complaining often get you attention, sometimes get you what you want but never make anyone feel good. Smiling always makes people feel good.

2. Dry dog food does NOT taste just like cereal. Don’t believe anyone who tells you that it does.Trina in outfit from Chile

3. Accidents happen when you are laughing uncontrollably with friends.

4. Never trust five year-old boys with scissors, especially when they have little sisters with pony tails.

5. Fashion isn’t everything. Attitude IS everything.

Ten Tenets By Age Ten

Trina First Grade1. You can keep a caterpillar, but you can’t keep the butterfly it becomes.

2. Boy germs are really quite harmless.

3. You will always regret being too afraid to slide down the fire pole.

4. You will never regret staying in at recess to finish the tissue paper corsage for your mom for Mother’s Day.

5. Sometimes people cry when they are happy. But even if they are happy, they probably still need a hug.Trina and Charlie Brown

6. Your world can change every time you open a book and read.

7. You have the potential to change someone else’s world every time you pick up a pencil (or a crayon) and write a letter or a story.

8. A dog will always keep your secrets. Always.

9. When you get a present you don’t like, you have to smile and pretend it’s exactly what you wanted. This most likely means you will get more presents you don’t like.

10. Using your imagination is much more entertaining than watching television.

trina 8th grade honor societyEight Adages of Adolescence

1. Being true to yourself can be very, very difficult. But pretending to be someone you’re not is even more difficult.

2. Boy germs may be harmless, but they are also very interesting.

3. Don’t try to grow up too fast. Acting like a kid is actually more fun than acting like an adult.

4. Life is all about change. If you resist it, you’ll just be angry and disappointed. You might as well embrace change and adapt.trina 10th grade

5. There is nothing like going through a hard test together to unite people who have absolutely nothing else in common.

6. There will always be people who think they know who you are. All that counts is that you know who you are.

7. Creativity is a necessity if you’re going to break the rules.

8. If you listen to what other people say about you rather than to your inner voice, you’ll never be happy.

A Collection of Collegiate Lessons

Trina at O.U.1. There is absolutely nothing better than finally discovering people who think like you think.

2. There is absolutely nothing more educational than living with people who are completely unlike you.

3. First impressions shouldn’t count for much at all. You can never predict the people who will support you when your world is crumbling.

4. At some point, you just have to stop worrying about people who don’t like you and simply surround yourself with those who do.Trina deciding the evening playlist

5. There are times when  you have to forget about achieving anything meaningful and just embrace the moment. Life is about creating memorable moments.

6. Fashion CAN be an attitude.

Eight Pieces of Wisdom from Adulthood

Trina at the river1. Your past will probably catch up with you, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

2. The most beautiful moments are often the most quiet ones.Trina in the Rocky Mountains

3. Acting like a kid is still more fun than acting like an adult. If you forget how to act like a kid, all you need to do is buy some Play-Doh.

4. If you’ve lost contact with someone who meant a lot to you, have faith. People who are really important will probably reenter your life at some point.

5. A lot of really incompetent people achieve positions of power, but that doesn’t mean others don’t recognize their ineptness.

6. Sometimes failure is the best thing that ever happens to you.

7. Never EVER stop dreaming and believing in possibilities. Just because something doesn’t happen when you want it to happen doesn’t mean it will never happen.

8. We often hate how we look in pictures. But, years later when we look back on those pictures, they will definitely make us smile.

About Trina Bartlett

I live in the Eastern Panhandle of WV, with one dog, two cats, a theater kid in high school, a band kid at West Virginia University and a husband who works strange hours. When I'm not working as a director at a nonprofit social service organization or being a mom, I can generally be found riding my bike, walking my dog and stirring things up.

Posted on February 23, 2013, in Family, My life, perspective and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. I love your eight pieces of wisdom to adulthood. I’m working on hundreds of pieces of wisdom to old age! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  2. Wishing a wonderful birthday. Hoping you make many wonderful memories and you are surround by everyone you love!

  3. Happy Birthday! You’re right about pictures. My “big hair” pictures from back in the day even make me smile now.

  4. Happy birthday! What lovely memories over time. Those are valuable lessons learned and more valued when shared. Thanks.

  5. Happy birthday Trina! Loved the trip down memory lane and all the learnings. May your year ahead be full of blessings and new beautiful things to learn.

  6. Betty Russell

    Trina – I must have missed reading this special blog when I was out of town!!! I absolutely love every word of it. What a beautiful child you were and what an awesome “grown up” you are!!!! I love know you!!!

  7. Beverly Railey Robinson

    This is a masterpiece. I hope you submit it somewhere and definitely publish it for future generations. Happy Birthday!

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