I’m holding on to the last thread of my 20s. In less than six months, I would have orbited the sun thirty times. Ah, the big 3-0. My Facebook newsfeed has been flooded with panic-stricken girlfriends who are also turning thirty this year. While most of them dread it and think that they have reached the end of the line, here I am celebrating this new era. Let me tell you why.
In my 20s, everything felt like a roller coaster–I went through loop-the-loops in trying to make sense of who I am, where to go, what to do, what not to do. I’ve cried more, slept less, worried heaps! Now that the door to my thirties is slightly ajar, I can’t wait for all the possibilities.
“Some might think that thirty is a ticking time bomb. I get it. How many times have I been asked by relatives, friends, random cab drivers why I’m not married? The pressure is on for wedding bells and babies, but I say that it is just an old cliche.”
This is the year that I’ve dyed my black hair to ash without having to think about what it is going to look like. I started wearing full-on red lipstick without having to care about what other people are going to say. I feel comfortable and secure in my own skin. I know that I cannot make everyone like me and that is OK. There’s less room for drama and more room for self improvement. While I do love getting a tan line, I recommend sunscreen to be every woman’s best friend, and I cannot stress enough how drinking water is the key to better looking skin.
Some might think that thirty is a ticking time bomb. I get it. How many times have I been asked by relatives, friends, random cab drivers why I’m not married? The pressure is on for wedding bells and babies, but I say that it is just an old cliche. There is so much potential in thirty. It is sexy, flirty, and thriving, as the catchphrase goes, but most importantly, it is sensible, in control, and strong.
It’s liberating how I can look back to my 20 year old self and say, ‘you are so much wiser now!’ It’s those years of trial and error and making the puzzle pieces fit together that lead up to a clearer, more refined picture. This is the perfect time to go after what I want because I have a better idea of what it is exactly that I want. I know now that there are colors other than black, that I am more productive at work after eight hours of sleep, that age is a word, not a number.
“This is the perfect time to go after what I want because I have a better idea of what it is exactly that I want.”
With my list of grown up epiphanies, is an even longer bucket list that I’m looking forward to ticking one at a time. I’ve signed up for a creative writing course. I’m writing original songs and singing it in public. I’m exploring healthier options in the kitchen. I’m about to start attending my first contemporary dance class. I’m just getting started!
I still don’t have everything figured out, and I’m still working on a roadmap, but my 20s have taught me not to be afraid. Bring it on, thirty! In the words of my most recent favorite writer, Jack Kerouac: ‘…burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue center light pop and everybody goes awww!’ Here’s to being feisty and fierce all women turning thirty this year. May we all grace this new stage with identity and self-worth!
Jennifer Hababag, soon to be thirty, is a creative living in Cairo. Follow how she nails being thirty on Instagram @cairogypsy. You can also read her musings and whatnots at www.cairogypsy.wordpress.com.