I turned 35 this week. Every birthday is a good birthday to celebrate but 35 marks the last stretch of societal youth. You start to notice a lot more of your conversations with your friends involve taking turns updating each other about what recent ailments you have accrued. 35 is also the age where you are supposed to officially be a full-fledged adult and you should definitely have your life together at this point and be in stride with your life. I’m still waiting for this adult thing to happen to me, it sure has taken a hit to my body but my brain and gracefulness have yet to catch up. I have four kids and a hubby of 16 years and I still feel like I’m faking the adult thing. I’m pretty sure I’m still a sixteen-year-old girl playing house everyday trying to fool everyone that I have joined the grown-ups.
I had aspirations to write something profound, life affirming and amazing at this milestone in my life and I also wanted to get cute photos of me with gold number balloons that represent me embracing and rocking 35. But instead I will be babbling on about how I was attacked by two mean girls disguised as innocent gold balloons, and how this relates to my life as a newly 35 year old.
As if being bullied by two giant balloons (that were determined to ruin my hat, hair and self-esteem all in one blow) wasn’t insulting enough this was all going down while the love of my life cried himself to death with laughter when he was supposed to be taking glamorous photos of me by the side of the road near our home. And every time a car drove by… I tried to act like I wasn’t doing anything weird with the balloons and that it was a normal sunny day hanging out with my husband… like my neighbors wouldn’t notice the camera and gold shiny balloons still trying their best to knock me and/or my hat over. There wasn’t even a breeze. Im convinced the balloons were possessed or they just really hate hats.
This is the real 35; trying to still be cute, trying to embrace it all, trying to be something amazing… but still getting heckled by life, balloons, and a shutter happy husband. It’s pure chaos and ridiculousness.
30’s need to be rebranded with better authenticity. You will never be so busy. You will never have such demand on your time and attention. You will be so overwhelmed with to-do’s that you can barely get half of it done. You have to learn how to cut a lot of things out and picking which of the priorities to keep and let go of will be a fancy magical trick of impossibility. This is the meat of your life and it is crazy and impossible in one. It couldn’t look less put together. They do say I will wish for these crazy days when they are gone because these insane days are what it’s all about. So, I hold on to that thought while I try to juggle kids, career, house, husband, health and yes… balloons to.
The truth is we are all just silly kids still trying to figure it out in these ever-aging bodies of ours that fail us and win for us every day. I hope we never figure it out. I hope we never get our stuff together. Life is built in the messy moments of trying and reaching. May we always be in the state of wonder, ridiculousness and growth. May we also try to laugh when life (or balloons) knocks us down, its gods way of helping us stay humble and reassuring us that we still have so much further to go.
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