Many people dread turning 30. It seems to be this big "over the hill" life change for the worse in our society. We fear aging. We hate fat and wrinkles. We dye our hair to hide the grey.
But not my mom.
She taught me to embrace aging. She left me a legacy filled with hope and joy with each passing decade. I still remember her turning 30 and later explaining to me that it was MUCH better than the 20's!
During my 20's I was filled with self-doubt. Constantly criticizing all the things I had said and done...and especially hating my body. No matter how many people told me I was beautiful, I never believed it. I always wanted to be more like the models in the magazines. But, not anymore! I thought I knew everything and wasn't afraid to say so...oops. I compensated for my low self-esteem with an opinionated air of pride. Another oops.
In my 30's (starting on May 24, 2011!) I am beginning the season of REAL self-confidence. I no longer care quite as much about what people say and think. I can stand up for myself with healthy assertiveness. I don't value what I used to. Instead, non-material things are what is really important in my life: health, love, friends, laughter, my relationship with God. These attitudes are what make me glad to enter my 30's.
In addition to all that, although my body isn't as thin and flawless as it used to be, I feel more and more beautiful every year. I have gained countless pounds since my 20th birthday, but I have gained MORE wisdom, faith, joy, love, and peace through the many experiences God has given me.
For those of you who have already enjoyed your 30's, my mother has also explained that the 40's are even better! She says that's when your sexuality as a woman really flourishes (can I say that on my blog?!) and that the 4th decade is so great the 30's melt away. On top of that, the 50's are the best yet...with a complete freedom to enjoy silver hair, beautiful wisdom-wrinkles, and the respect that only comes with age. Oh, to age with such grace and dignity!
Thank you Mom for leaving me such a wonderful perspective. Unlike the saying today that "The 30's are the new 20's," I am embracing what I really am in only 24 hours: 30 and lovin' it!!!!
Thank you to all my friends, family, and sweet husband and daughter for also making this the best birthday ever. Indeed, it is the first one where when asked, "What do you want for your birthday?" I could honestly truthfully answer, "I already have everything I could ever want."