I turn thirty this month.
In high school I was certain that by 30 I would “have it all together” because everyone I knew who was 30 paid their own bills, had cool roommates, and salsa danced at bars. Looking back my definition of “having it all together” may have been a bit lax. I currently have all those things (minus the salsa dancing), but still sometimes feel like something’s missing.
Our society (that’s just us FYI) tells us that there’s a perfect, completely achievable, end goal - a pinnacle of white subway kitchen tiles next to a gorgeous spouse (who btw is all things to all people), with two adorable children in bonnets, and passports stamped with exotic but relatively unknown locations.
Friends, let me take a quick minute to look up from my own curated Instagram feed and be honest about my panic in turning thirty. Sometimes I think I should own a house by now (one with an extra bathroom so when friends come to stay they don’t have to walk through my bedroom every time they need to use the toilet). Sometimes I think I should be further along in my career. Sometimes I think I should have gotten married right out of college. Sometimes I think I should have had kids in my early twenties (because you guys…I’m already so tired).
The reality is that there’s no pinnacle, in part because we keep moving the goal posts.
When I can put away all the “shoulds” and the comparison, I am so thankful. I’m thankful for every roommate I’ve had that taught me about living in relationship. I’m thankful for the job I had for five years where I had raise support for my salary, because it taught me the beauty of generosity. I’m thankful that I’ve had the opportunity to travel the world and be present in people’s joy and suffering. I’m thankful that I’ve been allowed the independence, flexibility, and selfishness that singleness allows.
Recently someone told me, “I believe you can have it all, just not all at once.” With this phrase I’ve been given a bit of relief. This phrase is a reminder to look at both my past and my future as a process, not as a pinnacle. For year thirty I’m going to try my best to focus on patience and thankfulness, consistently reminding myself that “not now” does not mean not ever.
PS - Thanks for being a part of my life the last 30 years. xoxo