Sunday, June 1, 2014

Not-So-Dirty Thirty

For the past two years, I had been scheming an elaborate 30th birthday party, complete with party bus, dancing, and too much alcohol. And then pregnancy happened. And that idea flew out the window.

I had been dreading the thought of entering my 30's for so long, that when the time came, I was all dreaded out. I mean, I know it's just a number. I know that I don't magically grow wrinkles and grey hair and start talking incessantly about bladder weaknesses in the course of one day. But 30....

I'M just not 30. I'm the 7 year old who wears purple rhinestone hats and Ninja Turtle t-shirts and loves to draw pictures of cats. I'm 15, an awkward un-kissed girl who goes to Space Camp and spends more time on school work and her weekend job than socialization. I'm the girl who is not afraid to celebrate her 21st birthday in a bar by herself (when her friends are not available) and spend the entire evening talking about foreign politics with a divorced elementary school teacher. That girl can't be the same as this person who turned 30.

And yet, despite my loathing and reluctance, my 30th birthday came. And I felt the same. And I looked the same. And I glanced at the collection of Redwall books and ceramic kittens from my youth and was happy to discover that they brought me the same joy that they always had. Despite the approach of this milestone. I was the same.

So I prepared to face the day without an ounce of sadness. After several tries (and much second-guessing: "can an attorney wear green skinny jeans?"... "can a 30 year old wear green skinny jeans to the office?"), I figured out how to wear my new pants to work. But probably only for casual Fridays.

19 weeks.

Can you tell I'm really proud of this outfit?

Then I left the house early to stop by the Department of Licensing to renew my driver's license. Amazingly, I was the first one in line and the first customer of the day. The man behind the counter checked my ID and, realizing it was my birthday, engaged the entire room in a rousing happy birthday song. This totally made my morning, day, week, month.

I was sent down to the other end of the room where I swore another man called me an "old lady" but it turns out he just asked me for my "old ID" and assured me that 30 was far from old lady status. Phew.

After this errand, I was off to work. As I cruised down the highway with a celebratory birthday apple fritter from the grocery store in my hand, a highly sweetened iced coffee in my cup holder, my windows rolled down in the unusually hot morning weather, and my new Bruno Mars CD blasting through my car stereo, I felt empowered to tackle the day. I felt happy. I felt loved. I felt grateful to be part of the beautiful world.

Think about all the potential people who never come into being. All the sperm and eggs that never meet. Out of all of those potential people, through no concerted effort of my own, I became a human. I was blessed with the gift of life. Through a simple everyday miracle, I became part of this world. I was suddenly struck with gratitude and wonder. And I began to cry uncontrollably at the next stop light (thanks pregnancy hormones).

And then Bruno Mars' "Gorilla" came on and, forgetting my emotional and deep philosophical thought, began to belt out the scandalous lyrics to my new favoritest song in the world.

Ooh I got a body full of liquor
With a cocaine kicker
And I'm feeling like I'm thirty feet tall
So lay it down, lay it down

You got your legs up in the sky
With the devil in your eyes
Let me hear you say you want it all
Say it now, say it now

Look what you're doing, look what you've done
But in this jungle you can't run
'Cause what I got for you
I promise it's a killer,
You'll be banging on my chest
Bang bang, gorilla

Ooh, yeah
You and me baby making love like gorillas
Ooh, yeah
You and me baby making love like gorillas

My obsession over this song is borderline embarrassing. 30 year olds can still rock out to Bruno Mars, right?

The sun shone through the trees outside my office window throughout the day and enticed me to leave work a couple hours early. I picked up the kids and we headed out to a new waterfront front where I napped under the warm, unclouded sky while the kids played.

Just a typical view up here in the PNW. So gorgeous.

Oh yes, and I "cooked" hot dogs for dinner.

My drive home is always met with spectacular views of three large Navy ships. Despite their greyness, they are beautiful. So large, so grand, so full of history. I always try to imagine the lives of all the heroes who graced the decks of these ships. These ships always remind me that the wonderful comforts of our lives were/are borne on the backs of brave men and women. The place I live may not be fancy. It may not be perfect. But I love our blue collar, down-to-earth, hard working city.

When we arrived home at 7pm, I found a note on my grill. This led to the discovery of a surprise birthday cookie cake, left by a good friend who knew I couldn't go out to celebrate because my husband was getting home late.

When the kids were tucked into bed, my husband and I bunkered down to watch a movie. That's when Ryan woke up crying. He always has perfect timing. So I rocked my baby back to sleep and reveled in all my blessings.

Maybe I'll stop measuring my age in numbers and start measuring it in blessings instead. Oh wait, that would make me really old....


  1. Happy birthday!! Sounds like you made the best of your day... somehow you made a day of the Department of Licensing, work, and a long evening with the kids on your own sound like the perfect birthday!

    As a fellow MILP who is closer to 40 than 30, I can tell you that your 30s will be awesome. You will grow older, yes, but also wiser, more sure of yourself, and more able to appreciate your blessings. Welcome to the 30s!

  2. Happy Birthday! I love your black and white top! The green jeans too. It's always nice to have a kick ass ensemble on a birthday. And a belated YAY on baby boy #3! What a fun trio to have :).

    And I second CM, 30 has been pretty awesome so far and still seems and feels very young. I may have deep thoughts when I get close to 40, but for now, 30 feels a lot like 20 but with fewer exams and more children :).

  3. What a great post! My 30th was always ruined by pregnancy so I feel you. I'm plotting a fantastical orgy of crazy for my 35th though. You are rocking that outfit!