30 at 30, repost

A year ago I posted about the 30 things I wanted to do while I was 30, figuring I’d increment it to 31 while 31.  Since tomorrow I’ll be 31 — and thus updating my wish list — this seems like an appropriate time to post from the archives… on my last day/ hour being 30.

{Originally posted 7.15.2009.}

I’ll be 30 in less than one week, and I’m (mostly) looking forward to it.  Honestly. My twenties were tough, dramatic angsty life-altering tough.  I don’t mind; I learned a lot about myself and the world, and I’ve (mostly) grown up. I wouldn’t repeat my twenties for anything.

Also, for some reason I’ve always wanted to be 31, and 34.  I think those will be great years for me (don’t ask me why).

At the same time, I thought I’d have accomplished more – professionally – by now.  I spent the first half of my twenties kicking butt and taking names, and the second treading water while getting my personal life together.  I’ve gotten raises, but nothing like the huge increases I got early on, and I’ve taken on new roles, but none as scary as in those first years.  Admittedly it’s easier to triple your income in three years when you start at $12 an hour, but still.  The older I get, the less I have any idea what I’m doing.  The work-related fears I feel are more about losing my job than about doing my job.  Is this what growing up feels like?  I hope not.

Fear is exhilarating.  For many years, the nervous fear in the pit of my stomach is how I knew I was on the right path.  And now?  I struggle with anger and frustration, but not fear.  Well, except that my super-cool and cushy job will be yanked out from under me.

And then I read Ms. Penelope Trunk’s latest post and I was really scared.  The only time I was ever fired, I knew I should have left months before.  I was treading water until I finished school, neither enjoying nor being particularly great at the job, but the paycheck was good so I stuck around.  And then I got fired.

So, back to my point. I’m going to try one of those life lists in the hope of some kind of accountability.  See, I suck at follow-through.  Case in point: if the cats didn’t bug me incessantly the minute they run out of cat food, they’d probably starve to death.  And I love them dearly.  I do seem to complete life-goals once I write them down, though.

{Aside: I found Maggie Mason’s blog through Melissa Summers’ blog, and the difference in their personalities has been thought-provoking to me, especially since reading this post.  Do you think that worriers, by nature, accomplish less amazing things?  Is being a worrier what prevents fantastic success? I think I need to stop worrying so much and start dreaming and doing.}

Thirty things to do while I’m thirty: (updates in blue)

  1. Hike (backyard doesn’t count, I’m told).
  2. Finish putting together an office. Done. More than once. In multiple places.
  3. Find a hobby. I’ve found a couple (quilting, blogging!) and remembered others (blogging, rearranging).
  4. Train well-behaved dogs. Sort of. Meaning, they’ve figured out what I want without me actually training them, and most of the time they behave pretty well.
  5. Keep a house that’s company-ready within a few minutes (this may like a small dream to you naturally tidy people, but trust me, it’s not). Yes!  If you don’t count the rooms behind closed doors (and I don’t), this is actually true.
  6. Make a job change… even to a less cushy job. Done!  And not a moment too soon, as my previous boss has left our business and is being replaced by a guy from outside the company. *Scary*
  7. Pay off every. single. debt. (in progress) Still in progress.  We’re left with the cars at this point, focusing on finishing and selling the other house above all else.
  8. Make one new good girlfriend. Yes, I have.  A couple, actually.
  9. Volunteer with the Red Cross – again.
  10. Listen to live music six times. Done! Accidentally and only because we’ve been hitting happy hour at a place with a live band, but still… counts!
  11. Finish every goal for my current role. Sort of. But the role’s over so I’m crossing this out.
  12. Learn how to cook Indian food.
  13. Move to the basement, at least for a little while.
  14. Go on a second honeymoon. We went on a cruise, confirming I am not a cruise person and neither is my husband (though he’s reimagining our experience already).
  15. Make my husband really happy for one solid week. Yes. I  think.  Perhaps more than once.
  16. Camp in a tent.
  17. Stay in a cabin.
  18. Go leaf-peeping.
  19. Learn to take good photographs I bought a camera!  Does that count? (No.)
  20. Devise and keep a daily routine (well, a productive one). I changed jobs instead, and now my routine is beyond my control.
  21. Go on a picnic with my husband.
  22. Read outside… really outside, in the clearing, not just on the front porch. Yes!
  23. Host a bonfire.
  24. Throw a girls’ slumber party.
  25. Laugh, out loud, at least once a day.
  26. Figure out my next career.
  27. Do something physically scary, like rock-climbing or riding my motorcycle.
  28. Go back to Tampa.
  29. Regularly do something physical.
  30. Pet a cat every day.

(I would like to point out that it took me more than an hour to get from #15 to #20, and a few days to get over the pathetic-ness that is my inability to come up with 30 really cool things to do in one year.  And the fact that #5 related to having a cleaner house. Evidently you need to practice dreaming big.)


2 thoughts on “30 at 30, repost

  1. Happy birthday! Hope it’s lovely!

    With my 29th approaching, I’m planning a 30 by 30 list, but I have a feeling it will be a challenge both to write and to complete. I typically write things I want to accomplish that year in my diary each January, forget about it all year, then remember and go back to see how I’ve done when the next New Year’s Day comes around.

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