Though some of you might be surprised because I look young, I turn the BIG 3-0 today! And lemme tell ya: it. feels. awesome.
While in movies and TV and even among some of my friends there seems to be an aversion to getting older, I'm embracing it with open arms. Why? Because I absolutely love the person I've become after these 30 years!
I've done a lot of hard work--a LOT--over the last few years to become who I am today. While I did spend some energy thinking of what I would accomplish in my 20s, a wise mentor advised me at 19 years old and through out the rest of college to focus my 20s on the question, "What kind of person am I becoming?" Rather than focusing so much on things I would do in my 20s or adding to my list of accomplishments my primary focus in my 20s was to shape my character. Was I becoming the type of person I wanted to be with the type of character I wanted to have?
I did the hard work of letting myself be shaped into someone that was more patient, more loving, more gentle, and more faithful. I sought to have stronger character and deeper integrity by doing the harder things that you know are right even when no one is watching. I learned to be slower to anger and quicker to forgive. Even before I got married I sought to become someone that would love, serve, and honor my husband well. I learned not only to walk alongside the poor and the marginalized but I learned to learn from them, find God in them, and to receive from them. I received the hard lessons in life that made me more selfless and humble and less self-serving while at the same time growing in being rooted and established as someone who is deeply loved. And I learned to lean into grace.
Sometimes it was fun, but most of the time it was not pretty. (Right? Who really thinks rooting out your pride and growing in humility is fun? Not my idea of a good time.) But as I sit here at 30 years old, more free in myself and more free than I've ever been to love others well, I can very easily say that all of it was worth it.
So yes, I love that I'm 30 because I see each year of my 20s as a badge earned by the hard work of letting myself be smoothed out and shaped more and more into the person I want to become, and there's no way I would want those years taken from me. No way--I've earned every one of those years!
Thirties, here I come. Let's get it poppin!