Ahhhh good old 35! Hello my old friend. We are quite well acquainted by now aren’t we?
It’s an interesting time to be alive. Being thirty-five is no longer seen as old in a woman. Is it? Or is that what us women tell ourselves when we get here? Wanting to feel like there’s still time to achieve the goals and the dreams.
I don’t know – I suppose it’s too personal to sum up here.
If I think about where I am now and where I thought I’d be now, I really have dropped the ball. I mean I was supposed to be a successful lawyer, working for the UN. Isn’t it funny how not only your life path changes but also your life plans and your goals. If I was a lawyer right now, I’d be having a mid-life crisis because I really hate the mundane every day part of law. It just isn’t me or what I’m meant to be doing. So I kinda feel like I’m exactly where I was meant to be even though I didn’t achieve anything on my original life list.
I did all the crazy things in my 20s
I flew with condors and I jumped out a plane at 15 000 ft. I surfed and I went skiing and I travelled the world alone. I met people and took chances and I drank all the alcohol and stayed up till dawn. I fell in love so many times I lost count and finally, I fell in love with myself and I realised that all I really wanted was to feel happy! Being happy was about what I was doing and how I felt in the moment. It wasn’t about whether or not I was ticking things off the life goals list.
I realised that I have the power within myself to achieve that. All I need to do is make that decision. The decision to just be happy!
And so I did.
So now, here I am, living a life that I hadn’t really planned for myself and somehow, even though I’m the ultimate planner, I kinda just got here accidentally and found myself in love with my own life.
Well, maybe not completely by accident. I did CHOOSE to be happy and that was definitely the start of my path. I also chose to be unapologetic about the choices I make in my life and the needs that I have as a person and that went a long way towards my happy path. I chose to accept that life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans and not achieving your goals doesn’t make your life any less successful if you’re actually happy!
Of course I’m not happy ALL the time.
Like any person, I have ups and downs. Good days and bad days but what matters during those times is that I don’t have an unhappy life. I just have a bad day or a bad week or if you’re following my home affairs journey, a bad few months. But I know that these are just moments in my life, they are not my whole life. They are not me and they certainly won’t last forever and that’s the joy of my happy life.
The tides come in and the tides go out and still, my life is here, passing from one day to the next. And sometimes, I wonder if I should be doing more or less or something more meaningful with my life but during other times, I accept that this is what life is about.
In your 20s, you usually don’t have the foresight to think about the bigger picture. Life is the right now, the instant gratification, the immediate satisfaction. Which is wonderful when life is good but when it isn’t, life is awful. That’s just not how I see things anymore.
To everything there is a season
My dad often used to say “this too shall pass” and I’d get so mad at him trivialising my life and my emotions and what I’m going through. And now, as an adult, I realise exactly what he used to mean. There is nothing more true in this world than the fact that this moment will pass.
Be it a good moment, or a sad moment or a whatever else moment. It will pass and sooner or later all we are left with are the lessons and memories left behind. That’s the beauty of life.
It’s neither good nor bad, it simply is.
Being 35 is good and it’s bad and it’s everything else.
All that has changed is my youthful expectation that if life isn’t going my way in the moment, it’s suddenly awful.
Even on the rainiest days, we should still be thankful for the rainbows. And in Cape Town, the rainiest days are suddenly the days we are most thankful for. Isn’t it funny how perspective changes everything!