I'm trying to keep my business, my triplets, and my waistline under control. I excel at one of those, fail at another one of those, and one is a work in progress. Which is which is day dependant.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

In My Thirties

The year I turned thirty, I had a massive freak out. Firstly because the teenage emzee could not even *imagine* being as ancient as a thirty year old, and secondly because I was worried that being 30 meant that I had to be a grown up all of a sudden. I was going to lose the very convenient excuse of being "in her 20's" and this was kinda worrying, because heaven knows at that point I felt as though I did a bunch of things which weren't all that adult or mature.

The crazy thing is, by the time I was 30 I had three kids (all aged 5), I had started (unknowingly) my business, I had worked at two careers, I finished or was in the process of finishing several degrees, and I had already been married for 8.5 years. And yet somehow all of this did not really seem to equate with being grown up. I didn't say it made any logical sense, did I? Somewhere in my heart I felt I hadn't grown up yet...but at the same time I seemed to have forgotten to have any fun, either.

I'm not sure why I think my twenties were all that free-wheeling anyway, especially considering what a bloody boring life I'd had up until then. I never snuck out of the house. Never drank (allergic). Never smoked (once, it made me hurl violently on the side of the road). Never did obscene things with boys (well, not really obscene anyway). I always did what my parents wanted me to do (except pursue a medical career.) I hardly left the damn house! So much so that my Mom sat me down and told me to get some friends because I couldn't just hang out with my parents forever (although I'm willing to bet she'd give almost anything for me to hang out with her now). I didn't party, go to clubs, get arrested, do anything illegal, kiss strangers...frankly, I did a whole lot of NOTHING AT ALL through most of my young adult life. I got good grades, went to school, volunteered for various organisations...and stayed home a lot. And then I got married, had kids, went to school, worked, volunteered...and stayed home a lot.

Damn boring, that.

Then I got to thirty, and I thought....wait a second! I just spent 29 years being gloriously boring and uninteresting and risk-averse and sitting on the sidelines. Who the hell says I STILL need to be all those things? Who says that life cannot BEGIN at thirty? And so, buoyed by my false sense of bravado, I started doing things which, to me, were risky. Dance lessons. Bikram yoga classes. Going out with my friends on Saturday nights - without my husband - and not feeling one single iota of guilt about it. Going out in the middle of the week. Flirting with anyone and everyone who was flirt worthy, and even some who weren't. Trying the odd illegal substance. Eating strange foods. Visiting strange places. Drinking (okay, not that one. Still allergic. Damn.) I started writing just for fun and even for profit. Seeing movies which were not rom-coms. Reading books which were not chick lit. Sitting right up in the middle of the front row. Volunteering for things. Standing up for things I believed in. Feeling sexy and loved up and kissing DH passionately in the aisles of my local supermarket, not giving a shit who may or may not be watching. Having sex on the school oval. Going to the gym just for fun. Eating ice cream for dinner. Leaving the house to go out anytime after 9pm. Leaning how to text and how to blog and then doing both with raw honesty.

Basically, I got to thirty and just decided that it was high time I EMBRACED this mad crazy life.

Before you all look at that list and laugh at my pathetic attempts at the wild life, you need to remember a few things about me. Firstly, that while on the outside I exude confidence and Type A personality...on the inside, not so much. Secondly, we all know how I feel about social situations. Awkward. Thirdly, even with all these fun things I decided to embrace, at the core of it I was still a shy conservative. So most of not all of these things required a leap (or sometimes just a small hop, or sometimes even a giant run-up) of faith on my part. So to you, learning to Bollywood dance might seem like a really small thing, not risky at all. Me? I was doing it when I weighed my heaviest, in the company of Jewel (coolest woman on the planet), in a suburb on the other side of town, at a time when my lack of coordination had reached epic levels. And still, for months and months and months - I shook my hips and wiggled my head and laughed my gorgeous and enormous Bollywood ass off.

So now I've gotten to thirty-five and a bit...and while there is no way I would say that I am living an uninhibited life, I will say that I've spent the last five years having a pretty good time of it. I intend on spending the next five doing the exact same thing, by which time maybe I'll have loosened up just that little bit more. And the five after that? Well, who knows. But for now, I'm in my thirties and I've woken up to the fact that life is for the living, not for the hiding.

Now. What are YOU all going to do which shoves you out of your comfort zone?

1 comment:

Poppet's mum said...

Wow, I just realised how completely opposite our lives have been. All the things that you said you didn't do in your twenties, I did - the drinking, illegal substances, smoking, obscene things with boys, sneaking out, going to clubs etc. I only realised I was ready to get married when I knew I had gotten all of those things out of my system. Yet here we are. I wonder if our 20 year old selves would have been as good friends as our 35/40 year old selves are and if you would've calmed me down or I would have wilded(?) you up. Glad to spend these years with you!!