A Farewell to My Twenties


Birthday's are a time for reflection, And Today I turn 30.

For me they represent a personal New Year -- a time to truly measure my growth...and note where I still need to get my shit together a little bit more.

Decade birthday's though...are an entirely different beast. Saying Goodbye to 20 and hello to 30 is a monster of its own.

This has been the most stressful birthday I've experienced to date. All 20's I was told to put me first, be selfish, live my life blah blah blah. But as I crossed over to the other side of 29...everything changed. I've never had more confusion, chaos, judgement and more spoken into and over my life. Everyone from strangers to my friends and family.

I’ve never had more confusion, chaos, judgement and more spoken into and over my life.

Suddenly, what I'm doing and what I've done isn’t enough. I'm no longer in school, no longer a high school coach, no longer a 20something -- I've run out of titles to define myself for my decade, so now what?  

Now, I'm told that it's "time".

Time for adult things, because you see...

I'm not engaged

I'm not married

I'm not currently with child

and I'm not a mother (except on a very part-time basis to my dog)

I've been in weddings, helped plan weddings, even helped orchestrate the most amazing (I'm bias) Christmas Eve engagement for my one of my bestest friends.

...and I'm not rushing any of the above either. So what am I doing?

I'm living my life.

Learning to live without labels. Learning to live outside of other people's expectations, opinions and commentary. I’m learning to love myself, independent of what I've done and what I'm doing. Truly living and believing that if I never do anything else -- I will always be enough.

If I never do anything else — I will always be enough.

As far as my 20 year old self -- I love her. Well if I’m being honest, it's more like "love adjacent".

Sometimes I really wish I could hug her, squeeze her, and shake some sense damn into her. Especially right around 19 and 22, because wooo chile the nonsense I put myself through was rough.

Despite it all, I'm thankful for the highs and the lows. 

As painful as some of the lows, I wouldn't change a thing. If I did, I might not be who I am and where I am today; and that's a risk I'm not willing to take. If I was never lost, hurt or yearning, I would have missed out on so many amazing friendships that helped heal my soul. If I hadn't chosen the wrong relationships, I wouldn't know how to create the right ones for me now.

If any of that changed, I wouldn't be THIS woman...who is now 30. My focus for this decade: to show up as myself, live out my truth, and protect the hell out of my peace.

While I may have no ring, no kids and no whatever else is on “the 30-something starter list”. I have lots of love around me, lots of hope in my heart and a lot of life ahead of me to see where this all goes.

Time and tide wait for no man, but time always stands still for a woman of thirty.
— Robert Frost
Ashley Shariemy vibeComment