I turned 35 this week. As my children sang “Happy Birthday”, showering me with kisses and laughter, I looked at the full table in front of me; an amazing husband and father, four gorgeous children, and I thought to myself: “My, how I have grown.”
Here’s my list of what I love about being in my 30’s
- Becoming more mature. The beautiful thing about becoming more mature is that I believe I am better able to deal with trying situations, and life in general. I’m calmer and more resilient. Better able to step back and review.
- Becoming a better friend. As I grow older I have realized the importance of friendship. That those relationships turn into family. My friends children become my “children”. Letting go of little spats, and learning to invest more into those friendships, has been a growing lesson for me.
- Becoming content. We all have dreams and aspirations, but I’ve learnt to become less restless about mine. I’m not saying we shouldn’t pursue our dreams, I just think I’ve become more specific about WHICH dreams I choose to chase. I’ve become happy and content with my life, appreciating what’s in front of me, instead of looking past it and not fully appreciating what I have.
- Becoming more appreciative and grateful. I’m not saying people younger than me are not appreciative and grateful, I’m saying that I have become more appreciative and grateful for the small things in life. Of the people in my life. Of what I have and for what lies ahead.
- Becoming “softer”. I was quite a “hard ass” in my teens and 20’s. And I feel that with age and children, I have become gentler, more understanding. Willing to listen. More patient with others – and much more forgiving (perhaps because I realize that in 35 years there have been quite a few people who were patient with me and forgave me).
- Becoming kinder. I went through a phase in my life when I was angry with the world. I became aggressive and abrupt in my speaking. But I have realized the importance of kindness, that 1 second of kindness can change a life. That a smile or a kind word can change a person. That I am no different to the person standing next to me. Instead of judging them, why not learn their story and journey with them. Oh what we can learn from others. Even people we might not like. There is never a moment in life that we cannot learn from.
- Becoming brave. I know now how to stand up for my beliefs and opinions, whether these are regarding my faith, parenting style, or lifestyle. I have no fear of standing up for myself and my family. Learning to be respectfully brave is the one thing I am most proud of.
- Becoming a better wife. I know this might sound silly to some. However I have come to love my husband more deeply. Appreciate his friendship more, his counsel, and mostly the father he is. It has revealed so much more of him to me. And my thankfulness for having him in my life is never ending.
- Becoming less concerned with what others think about me. So often we get bogged down by others’ opinions of us. It can so easily worm its way into our lives. It’s great to be at a point in my life to be able to say: “Well, this is who I am, and I am not defined by your opinion of me.”
- Becoming more forgiving of my body. I know I will never have a flat belly, arms that don’t sway and flap when I wave, boobs that are once again perky, and a bottom that doesn’t sag a little. It’s not that I don’t try, It’s just life. My body is exactly that. Mine. Learning to love it, trying to look after it, but mostly being grateful that I am healthy, has been a huge growth point for me. One I still struggle with daily. Learning to be forgiving of my body and in turn climbing into that swimsuit and enjoying life.
My life will be filled with memories that I CHOOSE to make, I sure as hell don’t want to look back with I should haves!
I loved my 20’s, I’m thoroughly enjoying my 30’s and I can’t wait for what my 40’s, etc, are going to bring. Here’s to living life to the fullest! Each moment, each day, even when the sun doesn’t seem to shine. There is always something to enjoy!