Thursday, March 26, 2009

Birthday Countdown: 3 days to HOLY CRAP I'M 30!

So I've been remiss on posting my 30 Is Awesome list, and not actively thinking about the positive has left me in a bit of a funk about the whole thing. (Because if nothing else, isn't this list just a huge form of denial?) Over the past few days I've spent less time rah-rahing my awesome 29.99999 year old self, and more time thinking: I'm not ready to be 30! Isn't 30 just the beginning of the end?

I know some of you (beautiful, talented, successful) 30, 40, 50, hell, 80 year old women out there will find this sentiment incredibly annoying. I know it's wrong. For all of the 28 reasons below, I know it's wrong.

But in addition to helping me gauge how awesome I am now, looking back has made me keenly aware that I have fallen short on so many ambitions I had as a young woman. All that stuff I wanted to do... Be a great actress! Earn an actual wage doing something... anything! Fit into a size that's not in the double digits! ...all that stuff seems like monumental hurdles at this point. And I have to ask myself if I don't pursue those ambitions so hungrily now because I don't want them anymore, or if it just hurts too much to think about what I may never have.

I feel angsty and silly. I feel sad and old. I want more time to prove that I can do it better.

When I first started writing this list, I knew what the #1 "reason 30 is so much better than 20" would be. It hasn't changed. And it is the one thing that makes me know I am more resilient, creative, intelligent, talented, compassionate, strong, loved, and monumentally full-of-love than I ever was at 20. It's the one thing that makes it okay that I might never fit into a size 6 or win an Oscar. It's the one reason I would NEVER trade my life today for more youth. I bet you guessed what it is...


The Number 1 Reason 30 is So Much Better Than 20

2. "
4. "
5. "
6. "
7. "
8. "
9. "
10. "
11. "
12. "
13. I know who my life-long friends are. (Thank you, Jenn, for reminding me of that.)
14. Barack Obama.
15. I have a gray hair. Why is this "awesome"? Because I had it at 20 and there's still only the one!

16. Thom helps do laundry. (Okay, there's three times as much since I was a co-ed, but it feels nice to have someone to fold it with.)
17. I save myself immeasurable grief with the knowledge that creating myself is more important than finding myself.

18. I know how to wield power tools!
19. No more roommates who never do their dishes, no more renting places I can't paint or decorate.
20. Edgar and Poe, my two lovely kitties. (They're a perfect pair and I only had one of them at 20.)
21. No more cafeteria food! (Every meal in college made me feel unsatisfied and looking for more. I blame my freshman, sophomore, junior and senior 15's on that damn food.)
22. Listened to my son's first attempt at singing today.
23. I am an accomplished, tested, imaginative artist. I have had amazing moments on stage, written thoughtfully, and crafted beautiful works in the past ten years.
24. I have such a better understanding of my parents, and can appreciate their full awesomeness.
25. I know what city I will raise my children in.
26. No more desperate searching for The One. (I am so thankful to have a loving, stable, challenging partner who knows who I am and loves me for it.)
27. No more mid-term papers to write.

28. I can legally drink! (A no-brainer here. Not that I didn't have a cocktail before it was legal, but at 30 I can go into a bar without getting cold sweats worrying about The Man.)


Keely said...

Yep, those little guys make a lot of other stuff seem tolerable, don't they?

Summer Ryan Doyle said...

And how.

jenn marsala said...

I love you, sweets. The world is better because of 30 years of Summer...I know my life is better because of you :)

Julie P said...

So tomorrow is the big day huh? And River's is the next day?
I hope you have a great day. Happy Birthday.
FWIW I am 35 - will be 36 in a few months - to me I wouldn't go back to my 20s for anything - 30s are much better, and I'm planning on the 40s being even better than the 30s.

Julie P said...

And BTW I think your list is awesome - I wish I'd thought to make one. What a great way to remember all the good things in life.

Anonymous said...

believe you me, 30 is young, and for your age you have a tremendous amount going for you. Sorry I missed the day.