Undeniably I’m guilty of having a few minor anxiety attacks, but at least they are not daily, and are triggered by something substantial-no shade. As I sat in my cubicle, I realized that in 2 weeks and 2 days I would be turning 31. For me, a quiet melt down was in order, which was demonstrated as I stared blankly into space for about two minutes. I had a similar moment when I was turning 21- another quiet melt down, and again I was at work. It had suddenly hit me that I was a college graduate that made $7.25 an hour. I wanted to be rich and famous, or at a minimum make $10.00 more, but I had no idea how to do it. I wanted to be a writer, a designer, and above all things a fashion maverick. My outlook on how my life would turn out wasn’t too positive, since I was currently selling sunglasses to people that wanted to be treated like Beyonce, despite the fact they only bought items in the clearance case. It was all getting to be way too much.
Last year probably would have been a more ideal time to conduct this kind of self -reflection, but I simply had no time to. My birthday was in May, my wedding was in July, and my only thoughts were how I was going to pull it off. Due to all the stress from planning, I only wondered would I still have a fiance’ by the time I got to my wedding day?
Being the competitive person that I am with myself, I recently assessed what I have accomplished so far in my 30th year. It turns out, besides adjusting to and being happily married- which is no small feat, not a whole lot. But, I’ve now decided to focus on the year instead of my age. This allows me to still end 2014 pretty awesome. I’ve also managed to read a few articles on how I should expect to feel as I enter into my thirties. They emphasized how liberating 30 should be, because your not afraid to say no or say yes. It’s like you are finally giving yourself permission to be authentically you, and I agree. I kind of have this now or never feeling combined with a consciousness of life being REAL. I’ve been in it for 30 years. If it doesn’t end up being what I want, I can’t get out of it, or not easily. So, I better start making it the way I want, or it’s going to be a very long road until I get to the end.
There are some major differences between turning 21 and 31, but also a huge commonality. I still want to be the person that I wanted to be at 21, therefore I am convinced I am meant to be that person and no one else. A major difference is I don’t feel any resentment when reading about millionaires under the age of 30, or entrepreneurs to look at who are under the age of 30 that would previously irritate me. I don’t need to be on the Forbes list of the most wealthy as I did when I was 21. Now, I make all the rules and I tell myself ultimately if I have been successful. Without a doubt this indifference about the accomplishments of others is the result of a more spiritual side of myself that has developed, and knows my steps are being ordered.
The 21 year old me would find it hard to fathom living without having made it onto a Forbes list yet, and even harder to believe that I’m actually quite happy without it. Along with that I’ve been able to survive working in “cubicle ville” with my dreams still in tact. If my life had to stay the same as it is now, I wouldn’t be upset about it. As compared to the 21 year old me, that probably had no idea where to start to find happiness, or how to get to a place of healthy contentment.
I am truly excited to have one more year added to my life, but equally determined to not sit in the back seat when I should be driving towards creating the lifestyle I desire.
It doesn’t take a birthday to prompt you to assess if you are becoming who you want to be, while being just as grateful for being who you have become. Because at anytime you can say “Hey life, here’s the deal, this is what is going to happen because I’m in charge.”
“I bargained with life for a penny
and life would pay no more,
however, I begged at evening
when I counted my scanty store;
For life is a just employer
he gives you what you ask
but, once you have set the wages
why, you must bear the task;
I worked for a menial’s hire
only to learn dismayed
that any wage I had asked of life,
life would have willingly paid.”
Remember…Stay a Busy Bee and Share with a Bride to Be
Rachel Bryant Lundy