well, technically, 2 days, 9 hours and some change.
that’s right. on June 1st, 1983 at 8:16am, i entered this world. presumably kicking and screaming and flailing and half scared to be out, and half exhilarated to finally be free. that’s how my life has played out anyway, so i have no reason to doubt it started right at the beginning.
30 is an interesting milestone to be approaching. about 6 months ago, i mentioned it to a co-worker and he suggested celebrating with “30 days of 30.” it was a simple concept with a beautiful theme: find a way, every for the 30 days leading up to my 30th, to celebrate/reflect/enjoy life. essentially make every day a party. and my birthday would be the 30th day, the biggest celebration of all.
well, the first of May rolled around, which was to be the eve of this great celebration. suddenly i was panicking. i had not planned out my 30 days and somehow they snuck up on me. i scrambled, decided to play it cool, scrambled again, battled with myself on the whole matter, decided to quit the idea and then committed again. this went on for awhile.
then the 2nd came. and the 3rd. and life continued to roll along. and as i shared dinner parties and bonfires, spring cleaning and weekends away for work, i came to realize something very valuable: i lead a rich and beautiful, albeit challenging and stressful at times, kind of life. i didn’t need a gimmicky birthday tactic to be reminded of that.
30 is still a monumental type of birthday, tho. and i don’t approach it lightly. in fact, i’ve been thinking about it for the last couple of years, what it means to be approaching the end of my 2o’s.
truth be told, my 20’s have been rough.
i graduated college with an english degree and still no greater idea of who i was than when i started. i worked various odd (i mean really strange) jobs, including but not limited to: debt collections officer, dental assistant, admissions counselor, pizza-making specialist, barista extraordinaire, executive assistant, public relations officer, and so on. more recently, i’m specializing in the world of wine.
i’ve dated and dumped, dated and been dumped. i followed one such love affair to Arizona. i gave away all my possessions to move (except for a trunk full of beloved books) and had nothing when i moved back. i gave my heart away and had it returned in pieces. and then i fell for the love of my life.
i found friends that became family, and began to understand what it meant to love someone for who they are; not who i wanted them to be.
i made mistake upon costly mistake. quit jobs possibly before i should and took jobs i definitely shouldn’t have. i settled. and i rose above.
and most of all, i discovered something invaluable: myself.
i came face to face with my faults, admitting i struggle with rejection from others and, more importantly, myself. i can easily hurt people with my opinions and ideas if i’m not careful. i am opinionated and willful and stubborn.
i realized just what i have to offer: an articulate voice, a creative prospective, a helping hand, a passion for natural health. a loving touch, an understanding ear. a passion and drive that fuels success.
i found yoga and a desire, not just to lose weight, but to love myself well. to care for and accept my body as it is (ok, i’m still struggling with this one…but the journey continues).
as i washed the dishes this afternoon, i realized that one of my greatest fears when practicing yoga was that i was never really improving. yogis call it a “practice” for a reason: you accept where you are with grace, but continually push forward to improve. change is so slow, almost imperceptible, but still present.
i see how this fear has played out into the bigger picture of my life. change has been so slow at times it was almost imperceptive. as i turn 30, though, it is evident how this journey of my life has seen great growth and healing and a movement toward wholeness. reflecting over my 20’s, and comparing where i was this time last year or the year before or 6 years before that, i see a different person staring back at me in the mirror.
for this, i am grateful.
live is a beautiful (and hopefully long!) journey. as i wave a farewell to my 20’s, and toast in my 30’s, i will remember that truth.
and let it guide me forward.