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OP/ED: Aged observations of a recently-minted 30-Something
One of my good friends is turning 30 this month, so I thought I would dedicate this column to her and lay out certain things that she can expect this coming year.
I have been 30 for a total of eight months now, so I thought it was only right for me to share my wisdom on the subject.
Now before all of you 40-, 50-, or 60-somethings and beyond start rolling your eyes at me, may I remind you that you once celebrated this grand milestone too, and it’s BIG. Thirty changes things, you can’t deny it. So just humour me and read.
One of my favorite things this new decade has brought is self-acceptance. Gone are the days of me cursing my red frizzy hair or my shapeless figure.
Oh, how I used to long for soft blonde tendrils that would fall smoothly down the nape of my neck. Oh, how I used to wish that one day I would be able to go bra shopping in the adult section.
But, no more!
Now, I have come to accept and even love my red afro. Gingers make up less than four per cent of the population, you know.
That makes me a rarity.
And no, it will never be soft and flowing … but I at least I have volume. Some girls would kill for voluminous hair. And sure, I may be small-breasted and doomed to wear training bras for the rest of my life, but the way I see it … there is just less to eventually go south. And I can rock a backless dress like nobody’s business.
I have truly found that I am no longer wishing I was more like someone else, now I am finally happy to be me, red afro and all.
Another thing this age has brought me is a greater level of confidence and self-assurance. I am far less concerned with what my friends are doing, or think I should be doing. I can express my opinion in a self-assured way rather than mumbling it under my breath for fear of not being accepted or understood.
I know what I want, I know what my passions are, and I am not afraid to express either. ROAR!
And, if I am busting a move around my living room to an old Salt n’Pepa cassette and a friend drops by unexpectedly, rather than blaming my children or too many martinis for my behaviour, I invite them to join! Without embarrassment! (Okay, well maybe a tiny bit of embarrassment, but way less than a few years ago.)
Turning the big three-oh has made me feel sexier, smarter, and more motivated. I feel like I have the world by the cojones, capable of anything, and ready to take on new adventures. I no longer think that I know absolutely everything and I am more open to new experiences. I have a greater appreciation for life, family, and great friends. And I don’t take things for granted as much as I used to.
It has been a time of self-discovery.
Now despite all of the great stuff about turning 30, there are a few downsides that I have ‘discovered’ along the way. They are minor but I feel as though they need to be acknowledged nonetheless;
1. I need more sleep. I find that I need a lot more than I did at the age of 20. A solid 8 hours at least;
2. I am more sensitive to physical pain. I used to be able to sprain my ankle and then resume a game of tag within seconds. Not anymore. If I so much a stub my toe, I’m down for the count, sobbing uncontrollably and limping for days;
3. I need more recovery time. If I have a night out with the girls, the recovery time can be up to three days!!! No more ‘hair of the dog’ for me;
4. Wrinkles. Yes, they start to come. Grab some wrinkle cream;
5. GREY HAIR!!! And more hair in general … in odd places. Eek.
Now I know can’t say everyone will have the same experiences I do, but I can say that turning 30 is a milestone. And I can also say that the great things that come with this new decade definitely outweigh the negative things. Thirty-somethings have their whole lives ahead of them, but with (some of) the knowledge, confidence and self-preservation skills that they lacked in their 20s. It is an exciting time and, from what I hear, it only gets better as the years go on. Who knew that getting old would be such a blast?!
So to my friend and to all of you who are approaching your fourth decade, get ready for your best yet! Buy some wrinkle cream, maybe some hair dye, and get ready to grab some cojones!!!
Ed Note: The Castlegar Source does not endorse or encourage the grabbing of cojones of any sort unless they are your own, as such is apparently less-than-legal … but we admire the sentiment.