Posted on: June 7, 2009 | By Maigal
When I was 29, my biggest fear was turning the big 3-0. I kept thinking that the number 30 sounded so old. In my opinion, a woman who is 30 years old should be married with at least one child. Well, I was neither when I turned 30. I had just come out of a two-and-a-half-year relationship with a broken heart. Although I celebrated my 30th birthday with all my good friends, it was the saddest day of my life. It was a day I reflected on my life and asked God, ‘Is this how my life is going to be?’ Single and all alone? Without love? Who would want to date me now, knowing I’m 30? I felt I was no longer innocent or youthful, like those little girls who party at Club Circle. I didn’t feel hot or sexy that day, even though I bought a new outfit, cured my hair and applied more makeup than I normally do. All I thought about was how miserable I am because being 30 means my body will deteriorate and I will get fat. My face will break out with wrinkles and my hair will turn gray. I know, I know… I was being a bit dramatic that day.
But the next day when I woke up, all those negative thoughts I had about turning 30 were gone. I felt all the negative weight I put on myself lift away. I was at peace with myself and I felt like my normal self again. So what I realize now is that the reason I feared turning 30 was not so much that I thought I would wake up a wrinkled, old, undesirable woman, but because I had created a deadline for myself for the things I was to accomplish. I felt the loud beating of my biological clock in my ear, and felt the increasing pressure as the deadline for marriage, kids — or at least to find the man I would want to marry — closing in on me tightly. What I’ve learned is that I put too much importance on a number, and created stress and pressure on myself to live according to society’s standard and milestones for defining a female life. But now that my 30th birthday has come and gone I realize that 30 is really just a number, and has no power over me. I had failed to meet society’s standard of where my life “should” have been by this age, and have found a new freedom in being able to now set my own milestones and goals based on who I am as an individual instead of what is expected of me. People can look at me with pity that I am a single girl at 30, or they can look at me with admiration as the strong, independent woman I’ve become because I know one thing that will keep me true to myself, and that is I will never settle for less than what/who I want and deserve, and will never choose a life based on what others expect of me. I’ve still got my looks and personality, and will continue to make my own rules, and live my 30s like there is no 40.