Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Staring down the barrel at 30

This year I turn 30. I recall last summer turning 29, and being surprised as I became that magical age that women seem to (jokingly) never age beyond. I've never been one to be concerned about age. My mom tells of how she cried when she turned 20, passing her beloved teenage years. Many good friends of mine have turned 30 in the past year or two (including my hubby). Truly, it's not really bothering me.

In fact, I'm a little excited. This impending birthday put me into a moment of reflection yesterday that led me to consider the different aspects of each decade. I enjoyed the carefree life of my first ten years. My teenagehood brought the roller coaster of ups and downs, and the fun factor of earning independence with relatively little responsibility. My 20s were really about early family life and motherhood - a whirlwind that has seen me lose myself and my time to my children.

Looking forward, I see my 30s as a time when I will get to relive those fun, carefree days with my kids. They will be past the total dependence stage of babyhood, and not yet causing me the worry of teenagehood. I will find time again to be a wife as well as a mother (which is hard to do as a nursing mother of a co-sleeping baby!)

My 40s will be a time when I can find more involvement in projects. Perhaps to do with work, or volunteering, teaching or music or drama. I have so many interests I can never tell which one will push its way to the surface, refusing to be ignored. right now I have to limit myself to one activity or project at a time. But in this decade as my children begin to spread their own wings, I will be able to balance guiding them through their teens and finding time for myself again. Besides that, working with teens has always been my passion. I can't wait for those years with my sons.

My 50s will be my empty-nest years. As my kids all leave home, I will have infinitely more time for all those ideas floating around in my head. I hope to do some more intensive travel than I will be up for in retirement - the walking, adventurous trips to more exotic places.

My 60s and beyond may likely be spent on a cruise ship. Okay, not all the time, but I do plan on relaxing and traveling more. By this time I will also be a grandmother (hopefully). I know it's strange to be looking forward to being a grandma when I've barely become a mother, but hey, that's the circle of life and there are wonderful things in every stage. I also hope to serve missions around the world, likely following in my mom's footsteps of a teaching mission (teaching English and skills to people in third world countries).

Perhaps it is this sunny outlook on the beautiful cycles that exist in life that have made me indifferent to aging. Personally, I still feel like I'm 20, and many days I turn around and think "I'm the mom here? Who put me in charge?" I hope that as I take good care of myself physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually now that down the road I will be blessed with a long and healthy life, because boy, do I have plans!

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