So, I'm 30 now. I've been 30 for months now and it's actually going pretty well.
My 20s were amazing: I finished the best college experience a girl could ask for, met the love of my life, had the most kickass daughter a woman could ever hope for, got married, found a career in a field and with an employer that I love, turned my hobby into a business, made some amazing new friends (and got rid of dead weight ones that I should have dropped years ago)... all in all, it's been splendid and I'm looking forward to the this next decade of my life. There are, however, some distinct things I am starting to notice now that I am a real, honest to goodness adult.
1. I have to eat lunch by 11:27am or I die of starvation. I don't know if this is an "old" person thing or just a me being lame but the idea of eating lunch at, say, 1:00pm gives me anxiety.
2. TV shows that I follow religiously have now started and stopped in my adulthood. When I was in college, awesome shows like Friends and Sex and the City were around, but they had started while I was still a teenager. Now, shows that I adore, for example Dexter, Tudors and Entourage, have all started in my post-college years AND ended as well. Next up on the TV chopping block is Sons of Anarchy (arguably my favorite show ever) and True Blood; both which started after Eva was born and are in there last seasons now! This is a disturbing trend...
3. My favorite radio stations are MPR, KTIS and Cities 97. My favorite stations to listen to in the car are public radio, the Christian station and Cities 97s. And I'm not just saying MPR to be trendy, I've been a sustaining member since 2006 and my dial is on 91.1FM 97% of the time, with the other 3% being songs about God or some off beat local band from Minneapolis on Cities 97. Almost everything on every other station makes my ears bleed. And since I don't like showing up to work with blood soaked collars on my shirt, I keep it on current events and uplifting stuff. (j/k I don't really wear collard shirts to work, but you get the idea)
4. I grocery shop with purpose. When I was in college, I didn't shop at all. When I was in my early 20s with Jason, we shopped and gorged on whatever sounded awesome right then and there. In my late 20s I got a little better about the quality of food we bought, but I still had no rhyme or reason to it. Now? I see ground beef on sale and instead of passing it by because what I came in for was chicken, I buy the beef because I know- off the top of my adult head- 3 recipes I can make with it that will be cost effective yet delicious.
5. Speaking of food, I know how to cook from scratch. I shit you not, it's like a switch was flipped in my brain these past few months and where before, I always needed a recipe RIGHT by me while cooking so I didn't mess up, now I can just go from memory or make things up as I go and it works. I still panic every once in awhile and have to call my mom for help, but as a general rule I would say you could throw me in any normal, American kitchen with a couple of staple ingredients and I could make dinner. I consider this adult winning at its finest.
6. I do not care what other people think. Okay... so, maybe that's a bit bold. Of course I care. We all care what others - especially our true friends and family - think of us, but I have stopped being so nervous about it. The facade of perfection is a heavy load to bear. I have officially unloaded it. My husband and I fight, my kid needed summer school, I haven't been to church in months, I didn't eat dinner until almost 10:00pm last night and it was super unhealthy when I did eat, our dirty clothes from the camper (that we got back from 8 days ago now) are still sitting on the kitchen floor in a pile (yup, not even the bedroom or basement floor- kitchen floor), I spend too much time on my phone and I'm horrified deep down that my photography sucks.
7. Sex is awesome. Ha- bet you weren't expecting that, were you!? But no really, the whole sex gets better with age thing for women, it's totally true. I look back at the sex that I thought was soooo good in my early 20s and just laugh. I didn't have a freaking clue. High 5 to the ol' ball and chain for being a significant contributing factor in this area as well.
8. I realize that gossip will never go away. People tell you gossip is the worst in middle school or high school or maybe even college. Truth is, gossip is always just as prevalent. Instead of gossiping about who kissed who (or is it whom?) on the playground, we now gossip about who lets their kid ride in a forward facing car seat before 2 or whose husband is laid off. It's all still just as silly as when we were 12, but the 30 year old me has come to know it for what it truly is; human nature brought on by boredom and a bit of jealousy. Instead of trying to pretend it doesn't happen, I'd rather focus my energy on making sure that when it does happen, it isn't peppered with lies or assumptions and that it doesn't drag on too long.
9. If I party hard, I will be hung over for 2 days. No explanation needed- the first sentence says it all.
10. Being a young mom is awesome. This last one isn't so much about me being 30, as it about my daughter now being in 1st grade and having attained real kid status. I didn't set out to be a young mom, I just always knew I wanted kids by 25. I had Eva a few months after turning 24 and I wouldn't change it for the world.
I was the first of almost all of my friends to have a baby, so there was no one to really judge me on how long I breastfed or if Eva co-slept or if I took the right length of maternity leave. I mean, my friends were all just so excited to buy little pink onsies and hold Eva on a semi-regular basis that it was all rainbows and butterflies.
Now that Eva is 6 and I am 30, I tend to fall into one of two categories: 1) I am the "veteran" mom in the group when I'm with my similarly aged friends who all have new babies and I can cuddle their little ones and get my baby fix and then promptly hand said baby back and go get a full nights sleep or 2) my friends are 5-10 years older than me so our kids are the same age, but I get to be the young mom in the group. Who doesn't like being the young one in the group? I can't go wrong in either setting!
So yeah, to any 20ish+ year old ladies out there thinking you may want kids- I say just go for it (with with right partner, of course). You're never really ready for the expense or lack of sleep or mom-brain (that is TOTALLY a real thing!) so I say just jump in feet first and enjoy. You'll thank me when you're 30 and have an almost fully self-sufficient, elementary school kid who is your own pint sized best friend. Who can help you with those homemade meals, not judge you when you don't wash that laundry fast enough and also like listening to KTIS.