i’m turning thirty years old this thanksgiving.
something about this coming birthday has me really thinking. and feeling. which is good, considering my bad habit of checking out instead of living inside myself. I’ve been doing better at getting present but as of late, my house of cards has come crashing down. again. shocker, i know.
i guess life is more cyclical than i would’ve predicted. i climb a bit, get good at simply allowing an awareness to exist within me, take steps to work on it, and WHAM! what do ya know? something new gut punches me.
which is to say, life keeps on keeping on.
to be honest, i thought 8 years of al-anon, therapy, self-help books, getting honest with myself, and really working on my weaknesses and conditioned behaviors and thought patterns…. i thought i’d feel better. i thought i’d be better. hell. i thought i’d be doing better.
and i am. feeling, being, and doing better.
but i let a certain chain sit around my throat, getting tighter and tighter and tighter whilst i continued on, not a bit aware, consciously.
i expected myself to have reached certain milestones by now. milestones people typically reach when they’re healthy, grew up knowing how to have an identity and boundaries, or at the very least had some sense of self. which i did not.
and of course, societal pressures got jostled all over in there, slithering into my operating system so i was running off of unhealthy beliefs about myself and life.
and no, this isn’t a pity party. loads of people figure it out way before me. loads of people get healthy almost immediately, figure out their current selves and desires, and make huge headway, all before hitting twenty-five.
that simply isn’t me.
i’m turning thirty years old this month and i’m only now deciding that BLOODY YES, i want to have dreams. and go after them. i want to want things for myself, good things, and go after them. whether the world cocks an eyebrow and judges or not.
but mostly, i’ve grown to welcome the truth that i don’t know. i don’t know how to go about things perfectly. i don’t know how i will feel tomorrow. i don’t know where i will be in five years. i don’t know, i don’t know, i don’t know.
what i DO know, is that it’s not my job to have it all figured out.
it’s my job to live.
genuinely, truly, mundanely, magically, in the present, in my passion, contributing, with joy, lovingly, live.
i’m grateful that so much pain has left. and that i know the remaining pain doesn’t have to destroy me.
i’m grateful for the beauty. and that i know it never has to leave me.
i’m grateful that i can honestly say i like myself, i like the changes i’ve chosen to make. i’m proud of the work i’ve put into building myself up. i’m no longer ashamed of where i’m at in life. i’m genuinely at peace and excited for my future.
the oddest thing of all – and best – is that THIS peace & excitement for a future i can’t yet name (though i dare to desire a certain direction now), is immeasurably better than any expectations my younger self had based on those milestone markers and societal norms. that future me would’ve still lived in misery. instead, here i sit. okay with the discomfort. hopeful for more. feeling, whole.