I turn 30 next month. Thirty. The big 3-oh. (3-uh-oh?)
I can truthfully say that I started freaking out a little about this a few months ago. For along with the 'I'm getting oldddd..waill' (think Rachel from the Friends episode where she turns thirty), I have also been introspecting, for the first time really on the approach of a birthday.
When you are a kid, you look forward to adding another number to your age, as well as to the cake and the presents you are going to get. HRH for example asks me every few days when he will turn 5 and how many days are left to his birthday.
From age 13-18 you can't wait to get older so you can 'do your own thing' and not be suffocated by your un-cool parents.
From age 18-22 it's all about enjoying where you are at that point in your life, which is basically having a good time with your friends in college (and of course the studying..yeah who am I kidding?)
There is a slight realization that your teens are over when you hit 20. But then the 20s are cool and hip (think Friends in their first few seasons). The world is still your oyster.
Going through your twenties is really when you grow up and turn into the person you are probably going to be. Habits that are formed stay with you and personalities more or less solidify. People start working, some have jobs, some launch careers; some get married, some don't; some have kids, some don't. During this decade you also realize your parents actually did know what they were talking and trying to teach you about. (You still only truly appreciate all they have done for you when you have your own child though.)
As I approach the runway of 30, I can look back and see how I've grown up. No I did not become the archaeologist or the first female soldier of Pakistan that I wanted to be at the age of 10; nor did I become the lawyer or the journalist that was my dream at age 18.
What I did do was enjoy university, work at great organizations and find out what I really enjoyed doing, learned what things I truly loved and found fulfilling, married a wonderful man, gave birth to a child who does not cease to amaze me every single day, discovered how important every single person in my family is and how there is a well of love and support if you are lucky enough to have had strong, loving and meaningful relationships with family and friends. I have also learned that dreams change with time.
At 30 I may feel I'm almost halfway through, and I better get on with whatever it is that I want to do and get done. So this decade is it.
...But 30 is still young right?
After all age is just a number.
"I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be." - Douglas Adams