I turn 30 in 3 weeks.
Since we turned 19, my best friend has always dreaded her birthday. I share the exact same date of birth, yet I always celebrated whole heartedly. One day a year, just for me is worth paying attention to in my book. As the years went up, I began to see it as a gift; another year of life, another year of opportunities, another year to do better, be better, enjoy better.
I never had a plan, like other people. I didn’t mark out the years to build a career, find a spouse or begin a family. Yet this was never the plan. It never even slipped onto the edge of a life map or a brainstorm as an option, that is until travelling became the only option on the page.
I sit here in Staff Accommodation amongst my colleagues, who are also my friends. I am the second oldest in the house, and, age wise, we are the outliers. I work a job so that I can enjoy my life here but I have to admit that job has taught me more than I ever knew I didn’t know. Trilobites predated dinosaurs and are as ugly as sin in my opinion. Our cave bear skull is quite young comparatively at only 40,000 – 80,000 years old. Petrified wood is literally that: trees turned to stone. Children here study fossils. The Irish Deer was 12 foot long. You can buy genuine meteorites for a pittance, or for $9995 if you want to push the boat out. I live my life around yoga, running and time out for me. Someone once asked what I was running from. After considered thought, I know I am running towards something. Me. I am getting closer.
I look at friends here and at home who are on the right path; marriage, babies, mortgages, cars, savings. I sometimes wonder, “what if?” but I know, for whatever reason that path isn’t for me, not at the moment. Oddly, I once thought that was all I wanted. Life has a funny way of changing the field on you. I have travelled alone. I have left a job without having another one lined up. I have lived with my parents and enjoyed it immensely. I have seen the CN Tower and Casa Loma and Niagara Falls. I have run around Ottawa and seen hundreds of people doing yoga outside parliament. I’ve made friends with strangers and moved on. I’ve made friends for life. I’ve listened to French in Montreal and tasted the most wonderful hot chocolate. I kissed a guy at midnight at New Year. I’ve learned to ski. I skate. I write. I wrote a novel. Badly, but written. I’ve run my fastest 5 miles.
These are all firsts. Who knows what I’ll get done in the next 3 weeks.
The big 30 looms ahead, and while it will be unlike any of the other 29 birthdays, it will be warmly welcomed. As a card in our store states: “Sometimes in life the only mode of transport available is a leap of faith”.