But here we are, on the day I turn 30 and enter a new decade. And WOW, it’s hitting me hard. I feel so dumb saying that, as my WHOLE LIFE, I’ve ALWAYS wanted to be older. But there’s something about this birthday that feels different.
There’s a lot of talk about your 30s being much “better” than your 20s. That you’ve figured more things out, you feel more settled and sure of things. I’m sure anyone actually in their 30s right now is thinking LOL, so I’ll just preface this entire post with the fact that I’m aware of that! Ha! But…
And I actually DO feel more sure of some big and small things in life. I feel sure that I made the right decision in scaling down my team and moving out of my office space. I’m grateful for less pressure to support a team and maintain an in-person work culture. It was not for me, and I know that now, being on the other side of it. I also feel sure that being a stay at home parent is not for me. Having spent six weeks this year without childcare has taught me that, through and through.
I feel more in touch with what being an introvert means and my needs as one, something I never gave much thought to before. I feel sure that for the most part chocolate desserts are the only desserts I find worth eating. =) I feel sure that interior design is one of my passions, and long has been even though I forgot that for most of my twenties. I feel sure that a “jet-setting” lifestyle is not for me, that I like feeling grounded and rooted in one place and feel lost when I have to frequently leave said place. And I feel sure that I was given this platform to do something bigger in the world than I initially thought, even if I don’t know what that is yet.
Realizing all of these things has felt very empowering and I’ve never felt clearer about them.
But on the flip side, the “weights” in my life have felt heavier as this date has approached, as if a new decade is going to cement them in their heaviness and uncertainty.
The weight of being the “bread winner”, of being an adoptive parent, of being a transracial family, of being an introvert and a mom, of raising a child in 2019, of having chronic health struggles, of the world as a whole deteriorating and what I’m doing (or not doing) to combat that, of money and what it means to me and how much is “enough”, of the toxicity of social media, of living a “public” life, of being far from most of our close friends and family and of feeling like I completely threw away my professional identity and haven’t found it again yet.
I always had lots of (albeit dumb) goals in my teens and twenties. To make it through high school (I did) so I could make it through college (I did) so I could start my own business (I did). To be married by 25 (which I was) and to be a mom by 27 (which I was). But I never thought past those in as concrete of a way. This is the first time in my life that I don’t have an exact number or task in my head to check off or fight towards. And as a major future thinker, that’s left me feeling really unsettled and lost.
Lately, my brain has been filled with thoughts like: What’s next? Is this what I want? Is this it? Where do I want to take my business? What lifestyle do I want for my family?
I completely uprooted my life path six months ago and have SO MANY ideas on how I want to rework it, but I struggle in my current unsettled state with finding the time and energy to sort them out and decide which ones to act on. All of the things I’ve realized about myself in my twenties have left me grappling with where my sweet spot lies between doing and building “big” things in my career, and maintaining the life I want and need to have for my family and my own physical and mental health. I don’t know whether I need meditation or therapy or a life coach or just some time for some deep inward thinking to figure it all out, or whether these are things you ever figure out at all.
All I know right now is that my twenties taught that I can’t do it all and I hope my 30s will be about discovering what I can and want to do instead.
Thank you as always for sticking by me as I learn how to live my life, and do so publicly. We’re all in this together and I’m grateful for this community, to both help me realize I’m not alone, and to allow me to show others they aren’t alone either.
This is 30!