Just the tiniest bit more of birthday madness– but this time, it’s mine.
Today’s my birthday!
And it’s a big one. I turn 30 today and I’ve been looking everywhere for complicated feelings about it but they just aren’t there. No one is more shocked about this than I am. I am always somewhere between irrationally emotional and depressed on my birthdays but this year, I just feel so grateful. For the people I love, who love and support me– I feel so lucky and privileged. I have three decades to compare and this last one was definitely the best. And the hardest. Of course.
In a sort of strange “About Me,” I thought I’d share some fun and serious musings about life, motherhood, and myself from the last decade. So here goes 🙂
- You can never have enough dresses, cute journals, jewelry boxes, or pictures of your kids.
- I only ever wanted to become a stay at home mom. And then I became one and it shockingly didn’t solve any of my problems. So “I’ll be happy when” will guarantee a life of moving goal posts.
- You make yourself poorer when you focus on what you don’t have.
- I’ve been reading a lot of old stuff I’ve written and I’m just realizing I spent so much time thinking that everything was wrong with me. Such a waste of time! I was doing my best and didn’t even know it.
- My love languages are bracelet stacks, coordinated outfits, large bows, and canceling plans.
- Early is on time. On time is late.
- The best places in the world: Hall of Mirrors, Keukenhof Gardens, the office decor aisle at Home Goods, Chapel Hill, and the moment in Harry Potter when he wins the Quidditch cup.
- Style icons: Blaire Waldorf, Cher Horowitz, and Kate Middleton.
- I write in all lower case on my Instagram because it feels whimsical and childlike and even though it’s done a number on my phone’s auto correct, I still love it.
- If I had to describe myself in two words it would be “lazy perfectionist” or “Type A-“
- Trials are blessings in disguise.
- You can’t control everything but you can curate everything.
- If you’re going to take a family picture on Sundays, the optimal time to do it is an hour and a half before church.
- Bad pregnancy decision: watching The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
- Movies that make me cry: Steel Magnolias, Life is Beautiful and (you guessed it) The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
- Joy and obedience are the same thing. Joy is not the same as being happy all the time.
- I think women tend to overpack because we can’t just prepare for the weather or the duration of the trip. I have to consider the different moods I might be in and pack to accommodate all of them.
- The funny thing about breastfeeding in public is that you win all the staring contests because people are so afraid to get caught looking at you.
- The best and worst thing about motherhood are the same thing. Your capacity for emotion is greater. So you will feel deeper, stronger love than you ever have before, enough to take your breath away. But the pain and hurts will be deeper and stronger too, knocking the breath right out of you.
- I can think of two major grudges I’ve held in my life. For one, I used to write down all the mean things I wish I had said and I checked it the other day and I haven’t added a new one since February 2018. Growth!
- Irrational fear: that some type of creature will crawl up out of the toilet right as I lift the lid.
- Irrational hate: the Trivago guy
- Irrational love: Marie Antoinette
- The turn around point in every trial I’ve ever had is when I stop praying for the challenge to be taken away and start praying to have the strength to do it myself.
- A lot of the time, anger is fear in a tough guy costume.
- Trying to guess someone’s race is a BAD IDEA. I’ve known this for more than just the last decade but it (apparently) still needs to be said.
- You have to be careful what you say to your kids in anger because they’ll probably say it to you the next time they’re angry.
- Be honest with people about your pain. Isolation won’t protect you.
- If childhood is so fun and exciting, why is parenthood so hard and ordinary? Do what you can to bridge that gap. For me, that’s TCK.
- One of the most important things I’ve learned in the last ten years–what’s taken me almost that entire time to learn, in fact– is that you must forgive everyone. Including yourself.
Well, there you have it. 30 things for 30 years. I have been searching for some grand reflection of the last ten years but I don’t have one. I thought turning 30 would feel like this ending, like a last chapter of something. But Matthew and the kids and being creative and investing in myself just makes me feel so hopeful and grateful and looking forward to the next ten.
P.S. One more thing I’ve figured out– the murderer in Law & Order episodes is either the obvious person who seems too obvious or the extraneous character who is barely acknowledged in the beginning of the episode.