03/19/2014 08:17 am ET Updated May 19, 2014

30 Things I've Learned on the Eve of My 30th Birthday

1. I don't have everything I want -- but there's liberation in knowing that the empty spaces have the possibility to be filled with the wonderfully unimaginable.

2. Life is short. There is no time to leave important words unsaid.

3. "Little by little, one travels far." -- American proverb

4. I'm fiercely independent, but I rarely like being alone.

5. The only regret I have is that I did not stay committed to my career as a dancer. I still brush my teeth in first position.

6. Vulnerability is the key to success -- in all its forms.

7. I'm scared, but I'm ready.

8. I wish I were hugged more often.

9. You get in life what you have the courage to ask for.

10. You can't ever give up. But sometimes, you have to let go and let God.

11. I believe in fairytale endings.

12. My greatest fear is being forgotten.

13. It's okay to be the one who loves more.

14. The world is so vast and beautiful. I get sad sometimes, knowing I'll never be able to see it all.

15. "Sometimes the most ordinary things could be made extraordinary, simply by doing them with the right people." -- Nicholas Sparks

16. Doing small things with great love is the greatest gift.

17. I'm still baffled how I can never remember falling asleep or waking up.

18. You truly do teach people how to treat you.

19. If you're in the middle of a little mess, don't forget how big you're blessed.

20. If they want to and have the means to, they will.

21. A kiss heals everything.

22. I'll never be cool enough to shave my head. Or half of it. Or even the underneath back part of it.

23. The best ideas really do come to you in the shower.

24. Books that get you. Films that get you. Songs that get you. People that love you are lifesavers.

25. Just be lovely.

26. It wasn't a waste of time if you learned something.

27. I don't have a favorite season. I have a favorite feeling. It's the windows-down, silent-back-roads-with-dirty-bare-feet feeling. It's when I can walk straight outside without reaching for a jacket. It is curtains dancing around the room because of the cool breeze that pushes against its fabric. It is sunsets after dessert and the grass as my pillow. The sound of lawnmowers, of falling leaves, of rain against the window and even of snowflakes gathering on the windowsill. It's playing in pockets of shade and walks along an empty wide road.

28. Being gentle and kind are the ultimate virtues.

29. My greatest hope is that if you know me, you're able to feel how much you mean to me.

30. "And in the end, we're all just human, drunk on the idea that love, only love, could heal our brokenness." -- Christopher Poindexter

To everyone I've encountered in these 30 years, because I knew you, I have been changed for good and humbled by it all.