Five to Thirty

When most women talk about “30” they talk about it as a turning point in life.

By “30” you should be established in your given career. You should be financially stable. You should be married or just a few months shy of heading to the altar. You should already have started your family and if you haven’t, you should be popping babies out on cue because of your ticking biological clock.

Ultimately, to the under thirty crowd, thirty is the determinate of whether you’ve succeeded or failed at life.

I’d be lying if I said that just last year, I wasn’t mourning over my assumed failures in life, on the eve of my birthday, at the realization that I was rapidly approaching thirty and hadn’t accomplished half of what I assumed I should have. If we are being honest, I had hoped that at twenty-four I would have been happily married or at the very least happily engaged and just a few months shy from an actual marriage. I had also hoped that I would have had a place of my own, instead of still occupying my childhood and teenage bedroom, and sharing it with my daughter. I was also pretty sure that I would have already begun my career, instead of working part-time at an after school program (not that I didn’t enjoy my job, but it just didn’t seem like something I could do for the rest of my life).

Granted, I wasn’t aware of the very abrupt changes to life that I was about to experience, such as employment at my current job and my wonderful boyfriend, I was very much panicked about the way my life was turning out. But more importantly, staring at the Facebook, Instagram, and Tumblr pages of my peers didn’t make it better. All the pregnancy, engagement, and wedding announcements did very little to help with my feelings of defeat. All the pictures of my peers out partying and looking glamorous as single women on the town, also didn’t help.

I was sitting around in bed in front of my laptop, ordering pizza, and watching DisneyJr. with my daughter, who had no interest in me doing her hair or wearing earrings.

But now, as I approach my twenty-fifth birthday, I’m not feeling nearly as defeated as I did the year before.

Maybe it’s because I have a man in my life and he’s promised to ride it out with me, through good and bad. Maybe it’s because instead of a job, I have a career, one that includes regular bonuses and promotions. Or maybe I’m just growing up.

Just last week, I sat at my desk and acknowledged the fact that I can no longer be considered a girl or young woman without feeling slightly insulted. While I enjoyed my early twenties for what they were with there mishaps, I’m ready to embrace twenty-five, and hopefully enter my late twenties without too many mishaps. I’m finally ready to settle down, but not necessarily in the sense of marriage (although, I am and gladly will), but in that I’m ready to start doing all the things I said I was going to do when I was twelve years old.

That novel that I have yet to write, it’s going to get written. Those short stories that I have yet to publish, they are going to get published. That documentary I’ve been talking about completing, I’m going to start and then finish it.

I honestly just feel so much closer to obtaining and achieving my goals that I’m almost sitting on the edge of my seat waiting for the 6th to be here, so I can celebrate my birthday and begin to watch all these things become a reality.

I mean, I’m just five to thirty, but considering how I felt last year and considering how I feel this year, I’m not too worried about closing in on thirty the way I used to be.

 

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