Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Thoughts on Turning 30

Disclaimer: If you are already 30+ then you already know what I'm about to write. In summary...what's the big deal?

I've always been an old soul. I think being the youngest of four kids will do that to you. You're always anxious to be the next year older, bigger, and of course a "grown up".  For most of my youth, I hung out with the "older kids" much to my mom's dismay. During my career in the hospitality industry, I was often the young buck...a good 5-10 years younger than my colleagues and clients and I liked it that way. Even though I'm still only 29 and 363 days young, I feel like it's about gosh darn time I turned 30. I'm ready to be 30. Which is a good thing, because it's coming- ready or not.

Let's just say...I enjoyed my youth. Spending the dozen years between 18-30 in NYC is something I wouldn't trade for the world because I definitely lived it the heck up. I was probably a bit too crazy but I came out alive and wouldn't take back nor do I regret a minute of it (even though I probably should). Let's just say I never need to have a midlife crisis because there's nothing this girl missed out on. Nada.
I'm a big girl now!

So no qualms about turning 30. In fact, I feel pretty excellent about it. It took me 30 years to stop worrying so much about what other people think about me. It took me almost 30 years to feel comfortable wearing next-to-nothing in a Bikram class and side-bending my way into a big, deep bellyroll without feeling self-conscious. If you care that much what MY ass and thighs look like then sorry but that's your problem. And if you don't like my "style" (or lack thereof), I promise I'm not dressing for your approval anymore. And if you just don't like me, I'm fine with that too. I've got 29.999 years of amazing friends who love me just the way I am. After 20 something years of feeling insecure, anxious, and "judged," I can honestly say that today...as I approach 30, I am comfortable in my own skin. And oh what a glorious feeling it is.

If I had one fear about turning 30 it's not that the one gray hair I've been yanking out of my head since I was 19 is going to start multiplying, although it probably is. It's that things are going too fast. One third of my life is over, only two thirds left. I'm aware, acutely and for the first time of my own mortality. There are things I'll never do again, even if I wanted to. There are things I need to do soon- if I want to- or those are off the table too.

In other words, what am I waiting for? What are WE waiting for? If I had one piece of advice to my younger self or those of you who are younger than me, it would be go. and. do. it. Like seriously, just go and do it. Go and freaking do it. One day you'll be 30, then 40, then 50 and so on and so on. What are you waiting for? To have the perfect amount of money in your bank account? Because you won't. To have the right amount of vacation time? Nuh uh. A mate? A plan? A sign from above? Here's your sign: GO AND DO IT. If there is something you know in your heart of hearts you are going to think about when you're old and gray (not 29.999 years old with one gray hair but like REALLY old) then you best get up off your thin-as-it's-ever-gonna-be-ass and do it now.

I'm in the midst of planning a big trip to India, and starting a business, and moving out of NYC all at once. But I'm not having a 1/3 life crisis- I promise. I just know how much I want to do, see, feel, taste, smell, hear, and BE in the next 60-70 years of my own precious life and the time to get started is now.

Growing older is magical but as we know, how we fill our days is how we fill our lives. So go. Fill your lives. Fill it with the good stuff. The stuff you can't quantify but will never forget. The magical people and experiences that make our lives glow from the inside out.  I know I sure am gonna. And when I am writing my reflections on turning 40, I can promise you that it's going to be a story you'll want to read.

Happy Birthday to me!