It’s a big week here at the Websterson household. Not only does our baby turn two this week (what the hell?), tomorrow is also my birthday. Josephine and I celebrate one day apart. My birthday comes first, and hers follows right behind. Usually, I am not one for birthday celebrations in my honor. They generally stress me out because I am worried about people having a bad time, feel pressure to entertain, and feel guilty about having a party just for me. I remember sitting in my closet crying one particular birthday party when I was a kid. I think the girls I invited over were being mean or something. Talk about PTSD!
This year, however, I turn 30. The big (or rather, middle sized) three oh. I have learned from a close friend that you should honor transitions and celebrate the close of an era, and so I bucked tradition and threw myself a small party this past weekend. I invited some girlfriends over, supplied lettuce, bread and potato soup, and asked that they bring salad toppings and wine. It was quite lovely. In fact, I might just throw myself a party similar to it every year. The simplicity and calmness of the event were just right for me right now. It was thrilling for me to sit in a room and actually talk to my friends, who I have not seen enough of in the past two years (did I mention my child was two?). At one point the entire room was engaged in the same conversation. It may sound ridiculous, but undistracted conversation was what I craved.
I am finding turning 30 quite nice. I was rather afraid that it would freak me out a little bit, but I am pretty darn excited to grow older. There are a few areas in my life that I wish were in better shape going into the new decade (my health, for one), however, I am overall pleased with where I am now. Not to say that there isn’t room for improvement (there is always room for improvement), but when I think of myself today compared to when I turned 20, it makes me so happy. I am so much more confident, aware, and intentional now than I was then. I push myself to become a better person, take on professional challenges with confidence, know myself so much better, and can stand up for myself in a way I could not when I was 20. The increase in my self esteem and self awareness are remarkable, and I can’t wait to see what the next decade brings. Bring on the years!
And that, my friends, takes me to my list (Yes, of course there is a list, who do you think I am?). A few months ago I ran across a blog post about a 30 before 30 list. Being that I was just a few months from being 30 I hurriedly began to write up a list of things to do and vowed to do them. Long story short, I didn’t complete my list. I was able to cross out 11 of the 24 items I could come up with (starting this blog being one of them), but there were still 13 left over. Instead of feeling like a failure for the uncompleted items, I decided to try again, with a different twist. Give myself a full year to work on my list of things I would like to accomplish, and try, try again. I decided to create my 30 while 30 list. Why not? It’s my decade, my rules. And so here it is. I am sure I’ll be checking in throughout the year with an update on my progress. There is a mix of items on the list. Some easy, some challenging, some that I may already be in the process of completing, and some that I am going to have to work hard on. I am hoping that by checking in and keeping these things on my radar for the year, I will give myself and my goals the attention I (and they) deserve. Without further ado and in no particular order…
Emily’s 30 While 30 List
1. Clean Josephine’ playhouse out
2. Buy new underwear (yeah, I said it)
3. Plant a garden
4. Host a yoga day with friends
5. Have a backyard campout
6. Organize the guest room
7. Make Josephine a star shaped wand (I made some of these a few years ago for children I know. Josephine has yet to get one)
8. Go away with Taylor for at least two nights (a calmer version of Vegas?)
9. Get a family photo taken
10. Be at a place where I am satisfied with my health
11. Re-furbish the playground in the back yard
12. Get my eyebrows done professionally (I’ve always wanted to do this)
13. Wean Josephine
14. Write at least one children’s poem (I used to do this for the 52 Week Club. I’d like to do that again)
15. Set up my sewing machine
16. Create a socializing spot outside
17. Decide if we would like to have another child (don’t get me started, I’ll flip flop all over the place)
18. Go on a camping trip with Taylor and Josephine
19. Write Josephine’s birth story
20. Go to the Academy of Sciences
21. Ride a mechanical bull (it is a lifelong dream of mine. I live in the Cowboy Capital of the World. I really have no excuse)
22. Blog at least once a week
23. Put together a family picnic for my high school friends so that we can all meet each other’s spouses and families.
24. Write at least one letter that isn’t a thank you card and mail it old school
25. Get our sun room/office/art space up and running
26. Take one week off from Facebook (because everyone needs a break)
27. Have dinner with one couple who we have never had dinner with before
28. Volunteer somewhere outside of work
29. Set up a regular date night with Taylor
30. Get a massage (so hard, right?)
Well, there it is. In all its glory. I am sure I have left something out, but I am hoping that I covered a lot of bases. I listed things that enhanced my intellect, fostered my relationships, provided time for my family, provided one on one time for Taylor and me, questions that need to be answered, and things that are just plain fun (mechanical bull riding, anyone?). So…here’s to the next thirty years!
Oh, and if you were wondering (and because I suppose I should pat myself on the back for finishing a few of these in a few months), here are the items I crossed off my partially completed and abandoned 30 before 30 list:
1. Start a blog
2. Go away with Taylor for at least 2 nights (I make the rules and I say I can duplicate items on the list)
3. Go to a zoo with Josephine and Taylor
4. Donate shoes I haven’t worn in the past year
5. Get a massage (so good I added it to the new list)
6. Make a home made gift for a child
7. Wear heels out one time (specifically out on the town…I wear heels to work all the dang time)
8. Moisturize (I was ashamed to admit I stopped moisturizing after Josephine was born. Happy to report I am back at it)
9. Exfoliate (Ditto)
10. Get a haircut
11. Bake a pie for the neighbors
And so you see, I did get some things accomplished this year after all. Happy Birthday to me!