Original Photo: Brooke Lark / Unsplash

In my social circle, I’m one of the last to turn thirty. There seems to be a lot of mystery about it, as the closer each of my friends approached their thirtieth birthday, the less and less they wanted to acknowledge their aging. This doesn’t seem to be a new phenomenon, as I’ve had one aunt in particular who has remained 29 for decades…

But I guess I’m odd in looking forward to turning 30. In fact, I’ve been telling people I’m thirty for a year now. I’m READY.

I can’t say I necessarily feel thirty. I don’t think anyone would claim I’m particularly mature, and when left to my own devices I can seem pretty helpless (lunch? That’s a thing I have to do EVERY DAY? Uuuggghhh.) But as someone who repeatedly got carded to sit in the emergency exit row of a flight only a few years ago, I’m looking forward to being older, and hopefully I seem it now, at least a little… Seriously, you have to be 15 for those seats! FIFTEEN! It’s not a compliment at that point…

I guess I hope that 30 brings wisdom. I hope that wisdom brings confidence. I hope I don’t use that confidence to belittle others who are still “just figuring it out.” I feel like I heard that a lot when I was just out of college. Older people reminding me that I’m a newly established adult wobbling around and learning as I go. Now that I’m older, what a bunch of bull. I’m probably less wobbly, but I’m definitely still learning and figuring it out.

May I never speak the words “you’re just a kid” unless it’s specifically to encourage a younger person that there is no rush in figuring it all out! It’s myth to think otherwise. That myth is the origin for the “mid-life crisis” after all. A major change at forty is no less significant than any other age, but it’s also not any more so either. It’s only because we expect ourselves to be “figured out” and “settled in” that it’s a crisis. But change is a part of the process, at every age.

I didn’t think that at thirty I would have two cats (I’m mildly allergic to them after all), or that I would have a degree I don’t use (but don’t regret pursuing). I never would have guessed that my parents would move away to get ready to eventually enjoy retirement, but that my brother and sister-in-law would be my neighbors instead. I wouldn’t have guessed that I would be an artist. I don’t think I would have expected to work part-time at a warehouse for years, and quit on Thursday morning because I realized if I didn’t right then at that moment then I’d never have the courage to leave, and that was worse than quitting. I didn’t realize just how incredibly supportive my husband is for cheering me on and how much he believes in my ability to reach my dreams. (although I shouldn’t be surprised, he’s the best.)

Thirty isn’t going to start at all as I anticipated. But the wisdom with turning 30 is that I’m a-okay with all of it. Even if it’s hard stuff, like making sure I eat lunch everyday, or running my own business, I know I am capable. I have the capacity to be able to do these things, even if it’s not right away and I’m still just figuring it out as I go.

Maybe thirty won’t be so different after all. But I’m grateful for it all that same.

As a birthday gift to me, tell me what your favorite lunches are! I don’t have much interest or skill in cooking. So, what are your go-to sandwich combinations, or toppings for an egg (I did learn how to cook that, at least). Let me know in the comments below!

2 thoughts on “Thirty

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