[29] 29 Lessons

Well. That's it. Today is officially the last day I'm 29. Tomorrow is 30, and that's been the whole point of all of this. 

Can I be really honest with you? I, the girl who wrote this series because she could not wait to turn 30, have been having the teeniest bit of a freakout this week. For just a minute, 30 seemed like a very big, very adult sort of number; and the list of very big, very adult sort of things that I've done or have planned to do seemed too small by comparison.

But when I really started thinking about this whole series, all the things I learned in my twenties, and this last and final word that I'd purposefully saved for today, I remembered that a milestone is not a finish line, it's a marker.

It will all keep changing from here.

Here's why I think we freak out over 30: I think it seems like the end of youth. Maybe it is with certain youthful definitions; but nothing has to end as we grow older. We imagine that adulthood is a certain kind of finality, but we never arrive. Life keeps moving and so we keep growing. There will be joys and sorrows, lessons to learn and lessons to teach, more stories to share than we could imagine. 

It's easy to get so wrapped up in a numbers game, but really life is a very fluid thing. No two lives look too much the same. We all take our own time and our own way getting from one point to another. Some of us never see the same things as someone else. But it's still a life, moving by, and we have only ours to live. Maybe turning 30 is a mile marker I'll remember. Maybe it's a bend in the track and the landscape is going to change soon. (Or, I guess it has, large cross country move considered and all.) Or maybe this year will be like other years that haven't seemed monumental, but when I take the time to think of what I've learned, it's still been incredibly important. 

After all, 29 was the year I had to alter my book writing plans; the year my kids turned three and one, moving me totally out of baby status; the year I battled anxiety; the year I chopped off 11 inches of hair; the year that I contributed to a magazine launch; the year we sold our little bungalow; the year we road tripped 2,000 miles and moved to the city of my dreams.

Twenty-nine years, 29 lessons, and the point really is, nothing stays the same. And I will choose to make that uncertainty the exciting part and I can't wait to see what's past the mark.