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Although each of the decades of my life were quite different, there were some things that always remained constant until now. In my youth, teenage years, and twenties, I wanted nothing more then to become an adult. I could not wait to be married and make a life of my own. I even came up with a timeline that would have me married by 23 and a mother at 26. Well, I am 32, with no children and I was married at 28. A bit off don’t you think? However, I can tell you now in my thirties, I no longer want to fast forward, nor do I have many things planned out. But how did I get here? Well let me fill you in…
At the end of my teenage years into my early twenties, I found myself chasing that “plan” until it made me sick. One failed and unhealthy relationship after another finally led me to my perfect match, I was 23 when I met Keith. Life was brilliant. We spent many weekends on frivolous shopping sprees, eating fancy dinners and frolicking around Manhattan. We were engaged when I was 26 and took our time planning a beautiful wedding. It was perfect and so very romantic. Life was as good as I could ever know. Shortly after we were married, we found ourselves in a life that wasn’t real. Many ghosts from the past came knocking and needed to be dealt with in order to keep ourselves healthy. I’ve always been an avid believer in therapy and my husband has always been connected to God, I truly believe these two things combined saved us. At 29, I walked into my first church service, that I finally understood and connected with it’s full capacity. It was amazing. It was now my turn to know God. He has helped me through our darkest days.
Once we became “whole” again, it was as if nothing could stand in our way. Well, so we thought. It felt as if as soon as I turned 30, all hell broke loose. We purchased our first home a few months before I turned 30. We were living the “American Dream.” Even though economy had already tanked, we seemed to be doing okay. Shortly after I turned 30 my salaried position was soon changed to straight commission. Our “American Dream” turned quickly into our “American Anxiety.” How could we make it work on a substantial amount less in our pockets? We tried so hard to not live above our means and made the conscious decision to purchase a home inside our reach. I scrambled to figure out a back up plan and found myself back in a classroom at 30. Working full time and going to school three nights a week, was at times, brutal. Many sacrifices were made, but two years later, I was finished and felt a great sense of accomplishment. And that’s how I got here, 32.
That’s the thing about your thirties, you can not longer predict or plan your future. You have to just accept and work with what you are dealt. You no longer can lock yourself in your room blasting music until your bad day dissipates. You have no choice to face things head on. It’s okay though, because it makes you stronger and wiser. Changing the amount of money you make, allows you to see things quite differently. The Fendi, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton’s you once adorned are no longer what matters, enjoying life without all the high end things makes you realize what is actually valuable. I guess it’s safe to say the older we get, the more humble we become. Just like the more wear and tear we experience, the harder and softer we mold.
Being in your thirties is like being in a terrific ocean storm. Most days you will continually be knocked down over and over by the harsh waves, but then once you learn how to ride them out, it becomes the most perfect storm.
Beth lives on Long Island with her husband Keith and their cat Zero. They belong to a wonderful church and have the most amazing family and friends. One day they hope to grow their family and travel the world.
Wonderful post and soooo true!!! You never can really predict your thirties but once you know how to handle surprises, they are a blast!