Yes, I’ve reached a quarter of a century in my life. I’ve turned the big 25 (not like it’s a special birthday, but you know)
Being in my mid twenties now *drinks a shot of vodka to drown my sorrows* I surely must have learnt a lot since 1993. Learning to walk and talk was the start of it all, then learning to take Creon was another one. Not the normal childhood milestone, but it was for the podgy five year old taking tablets before her Home sandwiches in school.

Apart from the above things, I’ve learnt to take care of myself, be independent and more importantly, find out who the true me was and how I could challenge the world in my own way.

But here are 25 other things I’ve learnt since the 1993:

1. Let’s start from near the beginning, learning to walk and talk. Pretty huge milestones. I use my legs to get me places and of course I don’t shut up.

2. Then comes starting nursery. As my Mam recalls, I cried buckets but 5 minutes after she left I ran straight to the paint and paint some random shit on paper. Good days.

3. Taking my first big Creon when I was 5. Back then, obviously I never really understood the significance of how much of a big deal that was. Before that, the capsule of a Creon was opened and the little enzymes inside were poured into a strawberry Petit Filou yoghurt before I started my main meal.

4. My first inpatient hospital stay when I was 6 was a huge learning curve. I had to get to the play room before anyone else if I wanted to play with the best toys and also get to the food trolley first while the food was still piping hot. One thing I did learn was that inpatient stays were never going to be all rainbows and unicorns. Far from it.

5. From being in hospital, I realised that I have crap veins. And lots of them.

6. Memorising my medication list off by heart for the doctors by the age of 9. Quite a proud moment, is that something I can be proud of? I’ll sleep on that one.

7. At the age of 11, I went on a weekend residential school trip to a place called Hilston Park. I learnt that if I could canoe for 7 hours straight, I can conquer anything. Life lesson right there, surely?

8. Then comes the time I reached high school. Things were going to get tougher and I would have to REALLY use my brain. How did I make it through those 5 years?!

9. Bullies make you a stronger person. They may have brought me down, but I came out the better person through it all and I’m happy with the woman I am today.

10. Also, make sure you don’t get caught skiving, always space the mooches out.

11. Learning that my father wasn’t the man I saw as my hero growing up was a kick in the guts. But he came off worse and I’m better off for it. He’s out of my life, and rightly so.

12. Learning that my Mam had been through the shit with him made us closer. The realisation that me and my Mam were a lot closer than I thought we were completely changed the way I looked at her. She’s now my hero.

13. When in Florida in Disney World, always go on every frigging ride you see. Especially Thunder Mountain (my favourite).

14. College made me the person I am today. I learnt that being myself is the best person I can be.

15. Also make sure you have enough money for the canteen at lunch.

16. Cystic Fibrosis giving me a collapsed lung was the hugest wake up call to keep on top of everything. A lesson I learnt the hard way, but a lesson much needed nevertheless.

17. My first job made me realise I can advance myself in my career if I put my mind to it. My first boss was a right cow.

18. Passing my driving test. Learning the Highway Code was hard enough in itself let alone venturing out on the roads and successfully not hurting anyone. That’s got to be signs of a good driver, right?

19. My friends become a smaller network than the one I had in school. This is something I am incredibly ok about. Who needs boards of friends when you can have a small group of amazing, quality ones?

20. Starting to support Liverpool made me understand football and what it’s all about. And of course adore Liverpool FC so much.

21. Fact 20 leads me nicely on to fact 21. Meeting the Liverpool players 2 years ago made me see that dreams can really come true. Ah, Melwood, happy times.

22. My Mam is an incredible human being. I wouldn’t have a good life without her, I’ve learnt so much from her, but not her jokes, that’s a work in progress.

23. Always remember the ones who are good to you, it doesn’t necessarily have to be family.

24. Love isn’t a complete bed of roses and champagne bottles. It has to be with the right man, someone who feels the same way about me as I would for them.

25. Having Cystic Fibrosis bloody stinks, but it’s given me an incredible inner strength I never knew I had. I’ve learnt to grasp onto that when I need it most. You never know when it’s just going to start taking over. Make each day count.

My life has had quite a mixture of ups and downs. Would I change it? No.
These lessons have shaped me into the person I am today.

So let's go and enjoy my birthday and have a little bit of this thing called fun!


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