On January 23, I turned 30.
I know some people freak out at the turn of every decade, with thoughts of getting old and the fear of a swift downward spiral, but I truly love birthdays and my 30th was no different. (It also doesn’t feel so old once you get here … despite my 13-year-old sister calling me ancient.)
I will admit that in the weeks leading up to the milestone, I was a bit sad to see my 20s slipping away. But as I thought about all the things I’d done and all the places I’d gone, I felt like I really made the most of it.
Now that I’m a few weeks into my 30s, I’m taking advantage of the opportunity to reflect on the past decade—and to make a list of things I look forward to in the next 10 years.
In my 20s, I …
- Studied abroad in Australia where I
- Met my future husband.
- Finished college and
- Put myself through grad school.
- Had 11 roommates.
- Moved 6 times, including dorm rooms, apartments and a house,
- Which I bought.
- Held 6 jobs—
- One selling expensive cutlery,
- Another working for a newspaper, where I reported on everything from crime scenes to farming.
- Totaled a car (not my fault … at least not all of it).
- Cried at my first speeding ticket (my fault but still unfair).
- Had 3 dogs.
- Made 2 road trips to Minnesota.
- Camped in Canada.
- Made lots of new friends.
- Took up running at age 28.
- Ran three 5Ks.
- Interned at a performing arts center
- And a public radio station.
- Saw numerous friends get married,
- As well as my kid brother.
- Tried to start a garden,
- And determined I’m terrible at growing things.
- Took an Alaska cruise with my grandmother.
- Visited North Dakota, New York, Texas, Pennsylvania, D.C., Kentucky, Colorado, Washington, New Hampshire, Brazil and Japan.
- Went skydiving.
- Changed my hair color 4 times, from red to blonde to dark brown to light brown.
- Gained wonderful in-laws
- And 2 nephews.
- Hosted Easter lunch
- And Thanksgiving dinner.
- Took an all-girls trip to Charleston, S.C., with the women of the family.
- Road tripped to Miami with the coolest co-workers ever.
- Bought real furniture.
- Read the entire Bible (twice).
- Kept 4 blogs.
- Went snowboarding and skiing for the first time … and don’t intend to ski ever again.
- Celebrated 5 years of marriage with a bike trip.
- And took thousands upon thousands upon thousands of pictures of it all.
Last night, as I browsed those old photos and blog posts, half of me wanted to go back and relive some of those moments. The other half didn’t, since going backwards would mean missing out on all that’s ahead—the fun, the challenges, the crummy things that still make you stronger.
So, here’s what I’ve got so far.
In my 30s, I look forward to …
- Running my first 10K in April.
- Visiting Hawaii … next week!
- Learning to drive a manual. I mean it.
- Finally going to Ireland!
- Seeing Emily graduate from high school.
- And completing anything else on my bucket list, in no particular order.
What about you? What was/is the greatest thing about your 30s?