Sunday, February 19, 2012

Turning Thirty: Becoming the Real Me

I'm turning 30 this weekend. I know, right? My mom is having a private meltdown somewhere because if I'm 30, that means she is...
Thirty is a milestone year, and I think it deserves a bit of attention on this here bloggie. I have a great deal in my life to be thankful for and so much more to look forward to. Pretty much, I love being 30 already. Allow me this soliloquy...

I entered this world at a respectable 8 lbs 12 oz (thanks mom!). Shortly thereafter I intuitively learned to walk and feed myself and manipulate cookies out of older siblings. I was eventually brave enough to peel away from my mother's knee and begin kindergarten. I navigated the playground semi-successfully; got knocked down, got back up again, peed my pants during Heads-up 7-up, hated dodge ball, but secretly loved rainy days when we had to stay inside from recess and read. These are building blocks.
One endless summer I pretend-married my childhood best friend in a tree-house with a cracker jacks prize ring. I buried top secret treasures in my mother's garden intended to be found by future archeologists. I fought and played and fought with my brother. I ate endless quantities of my grandmother's tapioca pudding without guilt. I played outside everyday. Mostly barefoot. These are memories.
Somehow, some way, I survived Jr. High School. Although I did not emerge without scars. My eldest brother tolerated me enough to take me with him to Southeast Asia. It was terrifying, but that experience saved me. By my later teenage years I had started to turn into a somewhat respectable human being. Responsible. Studious (albeit not smart, per se). I gained a testimony of my Savior. I kissed a boy. I pierced my ears. I made real friends all before jumping out of the house and into University where being responsible, studious and popular only made you less than average. These are realities.
I had roommates way out of my league, a lucky good job, and drove an unfortunate old baby blue Mazda ironically named the bullet. I learned to cook on a cattle ranch. I traveled to Europe. Along the way I wrote a missionary and eventually he came home. For reasons I could not understand he was in love with me too and for once in my life I followed my heart instead of my head and said, yes. These are tender mercies. 
We were poor, but it didn't matter. Still doesn't. I finished my studies and went right to work. My first job was a complete set back, but things eventually got better and doors opened that I didn't know existed. We moved away, but not that far. He went school. Plus more school. And now works for his dad :). We fought hard to save those things in marriage worth saving, and got rid of a few others that needed letting go. Along the way a few miracles happened and soon I will become a mom to a little girl who has stolen my heart completely. This is my future.       
I'm entering a whole new decade of my life, the one that I envision will be the most difficult and yet the most rewarding. I'm 30 after all, and I fully intend to act like it. I've been thinking a lot about what it means to age gracefully and I'm fighting back the pressure to look and feel the same as I did a decade ago. Truthfully, I'm not all that sad to see my 20's go. Sure, we had good times, but I'm more than ready to move on. I've given up many things that used to pressure me, including the need to be a super cute super young superhero mom. Rather, I've embraced the notion of simply being a mom to young kids. It's a small change, but has made a big difference. So you see, the older I become, the more I realize I am becoming the real me.

 

9 comments:

Michelle+Ellie said...

Stop it right now. That picture!!! Adorable. Happy bday g!! Beautiful words from a beautiful mother-to-be:) I'm so excited for the next chapter of your life.

Michelle+Ellie said...

Stop it right now. That picture!!! Adorable. Happy bday g!! Beautiful words from a beautiful mother-to-be:) I'm so excited for the next chapter of your life.

Sarah Phipps said...

Happy birthday and Congrats! I am terrified of thirty....and its coming faster than I expected. You will be a amazing mom!

C*K*J said...

A- I don't know anyone who expresses themselves more beautifully. You are the wisest, most beautiful 30 year old I've ever known!!! Happy Birthday my dear friend. May this indeed be the very best year and decade of your life!

B- You are KILLING me with that adorable picture {both of them, actually}!! You were the cutest thing EVER and I hope baby bee looks just exactly like you!!!

C- I hope you're having the best time ever, but I miss you like crazy!! It's gonna be a long 2 weeks. Love you!!! xox

Elizabeth Madsen said...

I too am dying over the pic of you as a little girl! So adorable! :) Even though 30 sounds pretty young to me these days, you are wise beyond your years. We missed you today. I hope you are loving Sydney! It's one of my very favorite cities. Jealous! x

Ames and Jer-da-me said...

It's weird to think 30 is upon many of us this year. I will join you in the 30 ranks in about 6 months. I laughed aloud when I read the heads up 7 up reference because I remember that. I guess I had forgotten it was you, but I did remember the girl who peed her pants while playing the game. I believe that was second grade, miss sartori's class right? Funny the things you can remember from...gosh!...23 years ago! Here's to being old enough to say you remember things that happened over 20 years ago!

gina bina said...

Well gosh, thank you everyone!

Amy, I am mortified that you remember that!! Yep, Ms. Sartori's class, totally me. It was not my best day of 2nd grade. But I'll have you know that I DID ask permission to use the bathroom, but Ms. Sartori's said NO.

Sarah said...

I have not blogged or read blogs forever and i am so so so so excited to read that you are having a beautiful baby girl!! I am so happy for you and cannot wait for you to hold her in your arms. You will be an amazing mother. So happy for you!! Happy Birhtday and so jealous you are in Australia, my lifelong dream!!!

jane said...

Happy 30th Birthday Gina! Oh, I am so happy you are living it up and having the time of your life in Australia. Ok, that picture of you is so adorable! So so cute.

We are missing you here! And can't wait to hear about all your adventures soon!

xoxo