As I approach the dreaded forty year mark in life, I think back and realize that there are so many things that I wish I would have known when entering my thirties. I am about to be a whopping 14,600 days old! Thank goodness we don’t celebrate birthdays by days or else I’d surely start a neighborhood fire from all the candles on my cake! However, while I do tend to dread having to say that I am F-F-F-F-F-Forty, I do consider myself ten years wiser and think that I could definitely teach my younger self a little somethin somethin. A real “If I’d known then what I know now” kind of pep talk if you will. So, I give you..... a letter to my thirty year old self.
Dear Thirty Year Old Self,
You are now entering some of the best years of your life, however hang on tight because it’s going to be a very fast, crazy, sometimes heartbreaking, yet exciting ride. Just keep this advice with you wherever you go, no matter what problems come your way....you can handle it and you will come out stronger! You are going to get yourself into some messy situations, you are going to need to up your anxiety meds, you are going to win some and you are going to lose some. But, guess what! You are going to live to see your fortieth birthday. I know, I know that’s like soooo ancient, right? Ahhhh my young en’ ...here’s what you should know.
See that ring on your left ring finger. In six short months it will be conjoined with a wedding band. Your last name will change. Your living situation will change. Your whole life will change. You are going to have the biggest, most beautiful wedding that money can buy. But, please remember it is just one night and your commitment to your loving husband, Brandon is for a lifetime. So please do not stress about minor details like what shade of blue the table cloths needs to be at your reception or shed any tears over chipped nail polish. At the end of the day, you get to go home to your husband. And, that is what matters. Now, I am not saying to not take it all in! Please take a minute to breathe and to enjoy the beauty all around you. Take a moment to feel the love and embrace the ones that you love on your wedding day. And please know that in the midst of the wall-to-wall hydrangeas, champagne toasts and the Chicken Dance...(eh just kidding. You will NEVER have the Chicken Dance at your wedding) But, in the midst of all this, please look around and know that this will be the very last time that you will have everyone that you love in the same room. Maybe take the time to go and love on some of those that you love the most because they will not be around forever. Enjoy this moment. Now, go enjoy your new life with your husband.
Married life will not be easy, but it will be worth it. Living with someone is hard. Adapting to someone else’s ways is hard. Conjoining families is hard. Having to watch a college football game on the tv when you would rather be watching a Lifetime TV Movie is REALLY hard! But, if you will put God first in your relationship, you will always be fine. There will be fights over the remote, the covers, what to name the dog, the kids. There will be a time when you wonder if you will ever get to have kids. You and your husband will go through things you never dreamed you would go through. But, if you put God first and you come to Him with your troubles and you keep the faith...your life will be so much easier. You are so lucky to have found the love of your life. Treat him well. He is going to be so good to you...and your babies.
In your thirties, I said there would be heartache. You will lose ones that you love the most. It will be one of the hardest things you will ever go through. You will feel as though a part of your childhood is swept away when both of your grandmothers get called up to Heaven just three months apart from each other. So when you visit your DeeDee on that warm September day, stay a bit longer. Climb into her bed with her and look at those photo albums together one last time. Tell her how much you loved her homemade donuts, her sass and how much you love her. Tell her how so much of who she was will always live on in you. Tell her for the final time “I LOVE YOU MORE” and give her “sugars” as if it is going to be the last time. Because it will be. And, when you have dinner with your LuLu just a few months later, hold her beautiful wrinkled hand a little longer, ask all the questions that you can think of about her fascinating life and truly listen, get in those last laughs. Tell her how she will always be one of the biggest parts of your life and your very best friend and thank her for loving you more than anyone ever will. Instead of rushing off to meet friends after dinner, go to LuLu’s house instead. Sit on her couch and visit all night long. And, then when you say goodbye and she is standing at her front door to watch you drive off, go back in for one last goodbye kiss. It will be your very last kiss from your LuLu.
Your LuLu always said that you can do anything you set your mind to! And, in your thirties you will see some of your dreams come to fruition. Not only will you continue your radio career, but you will find a place more suited for you. You and some like-minded people will begin a radio station that changes all the rules in radio. Do not be afraid. Just DO it! Dreams can come true. Yes, my anxiety filled thirty year old self...even for you. You will get to play the music that you are most passionate about, and it will be some of the most fun and exciting times of your thirties. Fight for what you believe in and a world of amazing things will happen. Always fight and stay true to yourself. This is a lesson that is so important for you to remember in this chapter of your life. You and your super talented husband will also start your own advertising agency/ production company. Starting your own business is scary, but if the two of you work your very hardest and again put God first, you will be very blessed. It really is that simple.
Your thirties will show you who your true friends are. You will form stronger relationships with those that you already consider your best friends. And, you will also see your share of fair weather friends. Do not be duped. Not everyone has your best interest at heart. Instead, embrace those wonderful friendships that you have and invest more time in them. If you do that, you will be a much happier person. Your life will be more fulfilled.
Your relationship with God will grow by leaps and bounds in your thirties. So get ready to give yourself to Him. You will become much closer to Him, and it is heartache that will get you there. You and your husband will want a baby of your very own. Making one will not be easy. Next to impossible really. I wish I could tell you to start now because maybe it will be easier for you to conceive at this time. But, then you would not have the same little blessings that you do now. And, they are definitely meant to be yours. So, you are going to have to go through the pain to get to the joy. You will suffer an agony that you never even knew existed during this time. But, if you do not give up and you give your troubles to God, He will give you the two biggest blessings of your life. It will be a journey getting there. You will unfollow people who post baby bump photos on social media, you will get angry, you will get sad, you will tell everyone that you do not want kids even though you so desperately do. But, whatever you do, do not give up. Never give up. You will get to see what prayer and faith and believing in God’s timing will do for you. You surrender to Him, and He will grant you your biggest, most deepest desire. You WILL become a mother.
When you do become a mother, you will get to experience the best and biggest blessings of your life. Your miracle babies will bring you a joy that you have never known. Your heart will break a few times on the way, but it is all part of YOUR journey. It will be more than worth it in the end. Enjoy every second of those beginning years because they will be gone in a flash. Please keep that in mind during the hard times. Get ready to sleep less than you have ever slept, to worry more than you have ever worried and to love more than you have ever loved. Oh, and you will also become a lot more like your own mother. And, that is ok! You will actually consider that as a compliment.
So, my young lass...have fun in your thirties. And, do not worry too much. Enjoy life more than you ever have. Soak up every freaking moment. And, stop saying that forty is “like oh so ancient” because I promise you that it will be here before you know it.
Your Old, Ancient Forty Year Old Self.