My Website » Blog

Masthead header

On Turning 28. {Asheville, NC Boudoir Photographer}

Yesterday, my dear friend Theresa asked me how I felt about turning 28.

Blurting out my response without thinking {as I often do} I said, “I feel like I should have accomplished more by now. Changed the world in some way.”

I know, I know.  That is such a depressing response to what should have been a simple question. My answer should have involved something simple like, “It feels the same.” or some clever come-back about my Alzheimer’s coming on or needing a new hip.

But, true to form, I said the first thing that came into my brain.


It’s true though.

I honestly thought by the time I turned 25 I would have my entire career figured out.
Then, by 28 I’d be RICH.
Like, traveling out of the country several times a year rich.
Like, apartment in Paris, Chicago, and home rich.
Like, brand name groceries rich.
Like, probably a bit unrealistically rich.

I thought I’d be skinny.
I’d feel in control of my life.
I’d be so deeply in love that I never felt alone.
I’d live everyday like it was a beautiful adventure.

I also thought I’d be changing lives daily.
That my position in the world would all of the sudden make sense.
That I would know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I mattered in the grand scheme of things.

Turns out, I’m still doing math as I grocery shop so I don’t have to put anything back at the register.
I, more often than I’d like to, make bad judgement calls or mistakes at work.
I suck at saving money.

I may never be skinny and that’s alright.
And, I’m not sure if anyone ever feels like they are in complete control of their life.
Love is a tricky thing and is difficult to measure in volume or in genre.

Loneliness is something you can experience whether or not you are loved.
You can experience it surrounded by people and not experience it when you’re completely alone.
It’s natural and a part of the ebb and flow of the day to day.

Knowing that you matter to the world is something that we may never see in our lifetime.
Changing the world doesn’t often get to happen on a grand scale.
We all want to be the heroes.
We want to be the one to invent the cure for cancer or develop some technology that can cure all of the problems for the third world.
We want to single-handedly re-define the definition of what’s considered beautiful.

But, the truth is, that no movement is a single person.
No change occurs because of one isolated circumstance.
It’s all of the small, daily steps that we take that change the world.
It’s your choice to see someone and care for their needs in that moment.
It’s the group of people who come together, each playing their different parts, but, ultimately changing a culture.
Sure, there are some that get recognized for these changes. But, everyone who wants to is playing their part.

Feeling like we don’t matter in the world is a hard place to exist.
Feeling like nothing we do is working or that we are spinning our wheels.
Seeing little fruit for the hard work and determination we muster day to day.
It’s not easy.

Being 28 and feeling shakier than ever on a foundation that you’ve built with only the few supplies you could round-up.
It’s not easy.

But, there’s one thing I know to be true and it’s the one thing that I will continue to hold onto.

No matter what life throws our way, no matter how many times you have to put back the mangoes because $2 for one piece of fruit feels excessive,
No matter how little you see the impact you have on the earth…

Life really is a beautiful adventure.

with love and 28,



Joanna Helton - January 27, 2014 - 2:39 pm

I thought a lot about this quote this past week and think its so great… “We can do no great things, only small things with great love.” – Mother Teresa. It was a good reminder to me.

Lindsey Leahy - January 27, 2014 - 3:26 pm

This is absolutely beautiful. Thank you, so very much.

Sarah Diane Rominger - January 27, 2014 - 4:20 pm

You are beautiful, Sarajane. Our twenties is the perfect time for restlessness, I figure. So much we wish we had figured out, but don’t, resulting in lots of apprehension and discomfort going on inside of us. I had many of these same thoughts on my 27th birthday a few weeks ago. 🙂 But like you say, life really is a beautiful adventure, and we should enjoy the uncertainty that comes with youth while it lasts. 😉 You have such a way with words, and I love reading your posts! Keep writing, pretty lady. <3

Megan De Camara - January 28, 2014 - 1:12 am

This is honest and beautiful just like you!

Cate Nunez Scales - January 28, 2014 - 3:47 am

Even at 45, this still rings true. Beautiful.

M o r e   i n f o