yesterday afternoon, i felt an indescribable panic at the thought of turning 30. i love being 29, and can understand why it was just announced “the most popular age ever.” you’re old enough to know who you are, young enough to be occasionally irresponsible, young enough for your best days to stretch out before you like a string of golden promises.
but yesterday, i was two months away from being 30. i called one of my best friends, and then hung up because i was weeping as though i was heartbroken. and in a way, i was. there are a series of dreams that have not yet been realized. i’m 29 and all i have is this PhD, i kept thinking to myself.
even my thoughts are bratty, i thought. i am in the seat of privilege: a 29 year old with a PhD, no student loans, a supportive family, and the means by which to live out a time of adventure in New York. when i woke up bleary eyed and sad, my mother all but snorted at my dramatic antics.
she was right to do so, because i have never known true suffering. sadness, and temporary bouts of despair, most certainly. and getting a PhD is no easy feat. but i have and continue to be cosseted by the love of God, my family and friends. even the men i meet endeavor to protect me at all costs.
ultimately, i was panicked because i can’t see what God is doing with my life. “praise Him in the hallway”, the memes say, but it can be difficult to do when you’ve been there a long time and its dark and you’re just stuck there with your thoughts. I’m being stretched, and pulled, and it’s good for me. It’s a good pain. But a pain nonetheless.
so i threw on a dress that makes me feel pretty always, met up with a friend of mine from junior high school. we had a delicious lunch of banh minh and truffle french fries, then sauntered around soho. i decamped to a darling coffee shop in crown heights for rest and restoration. perhaps i’ll have some champagne sometime this evening, because how can you be sad with champagne?
maybe turning 30 won’t be so bad.