SHEENA BARNETT: Measure age by experience, not numbers

By Sheena Barnett/NEMS Daily Journal

One night, earlier this year, my best friend Spencer and I were trying to make these little baklava-like desserts as quickly as possible before an event in Tupelo.
We needed to sing while we worked so we’d be done by show time, and somehow Cher was brought up, and so we sang “Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves” to our little desserts.
We sang it a few times before Spencer stopped and looked up at me.
“Sheen Bean,” he said, “don’t ever grow up.”
Well, I hate to break it to him, but I’m about to.
On May 6, I’ll turn 30.
And I won’t lie, I’m not thrilled about that age. I don’t feel 30. I still feel 15, maybe because I still spend my free time doing what I did when I was 15: Clogging and watching “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.”
But then I think about everything that’s brought me here, and I guess I’ve lived enough for 30.
Speaking of dancing, I’ve danced in more recitals and performances than I can count.
I’ve traveled from New York to Los Angeles and plenty of places in between.
I survived being editor-in-chief of The Daily Mississippian, in a year full of 24-page sections. And somewhere along the way I earned my journalism degree.
As a reporter, I’ve flown a plane, hugged Ryan Seacrest and experienced a haunting. I can’t even begin to count how many stories, columns, briefs, reviews, cutlines and headlines I’ve written.
I’ve seen more concerts than I can remember, hearing my favorite songs live and surviving scary mosh pits.
I learned the most fun starts at midnight, whether it’s a midnight movie or time warping to “Rocky Horror Picture Show” in Memphis with Spencer.
I’ve lost all of my grandparents and gained the most adorable younger cousins, and watched so many of my best friends become parents.
I’ve had my heart broken and I’ve broken others’ hearts.
I’ve been in the hospital, broken a few toes and survived a scary hydroplaning.
I can make a really awesome cheesecake and even better s’mores cookies.
I’ve felt God move in my heart and in my life.
Then again, I’ve got more living to do.
My Chuck Taylors have plenty of places they want to explore, and I’m willing to go along with them.
There’s a long, long, long list of books, movies, TV shows, comic books and albums I still want to devour.
There’s probably an even longer list of people I’d like to interview and stories I’d like to tell.
More than anything else, I want some peace and security – for myself, my family, my friends, the world.
So, an interview with Joss Whedon and/or Gerard Way, and world peace – that’s what I’m getting for my birthday, right?

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