Today I turn 30 and I have never had a plan for my life. No roadmap or milestones to check off. There is no notebook from childhood that lists out all the things I want to happen by age X. In reading my childhood diaries, they consist mostly of poems, stories about friends and wanting to be understood, less about to-do’s (besides being a rock star of course). Those who know me well might find the lack of life planning to be surprising, but really, I have taken it day by day.
Leading up to today, I have received the typical questions like, how do you feel? Have you accomplished all that you wanted to by 30? Where do you see yourself in 5 years? All of these questions make me think about how we define ourselves. They lead to the obvious and predictable. Questions about self-worth, relationships, kids, marriage and money. Technically, and on paper, I am a single female homeowner living in San Francisco with my childhood best friend of 20 years. I have a job that I love, and while all these things used to define me, they no longer do. All of the things I previously listed could and would absolutely make a person happy (that’s a pretty nice life!), but I have learned that this sort of happiness is temporary unless you are 100% with yourself. Comfortable with who you are.
Looking back, if I were to pick a goal for 30 it would be simple, to be happy. Happy with who I am, happy with what I have to offer those around me, and happy in my own skin. Of course I have days where I question my appearance. And more often than not I have days where I wonder if I have done a good enough job becoming the person that I am today. Do I treat my friends and family well? Do I make those around me feel special? Do I spend enough one on one time with the people close to me who require it? It’s not easy becoming yourself. So far, is has been the toughest job life has handed me.
So, here I am on my 30th Birthday. Still no plan, no roadmap, no milestones to check off (except a number), but I am happy. Happy with all the things I would have told my 20-year-old self to have made a goal for the day I turn 30. Now, this post doesn't mean I was never happy before today, of course I was, but I’ve learned that no plan is the best plan and that falling is the only way to rise.
Do you recall the popular Marlin Monroe quote all girls repeated over and over to themselves after their first heartbreak?
“If you can't handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don't deserve me at my best.”
I have my own little spin off and it goes....
“If I can’t handle me at my worst, I wouldn’t know what it’s like to feel my best.”
So that’s what I am taking away today, on the day of my 30th. Happiness, check. After all, things can appear perfect on paper, but what’s off paper is what matters, because off paper, I am so much more.
Thanks for listening :)