It's Gunna Work Out Fine

May 6, 2017

I turned 30 last week and, at this moment, I am bubbling over with energy, optimism, and happiness. I don't know why and I know it won't last through every day all day, but this is pure, rested and tested ambition. (FYI: editing one week later and I can confirm - did not last).

Underneath the temporary spurts of energy, though, is also this new sensation I believe to be something along the lines of contentment. It's not something I've known since I was a wee feral child whose basic needs allowed total relaxation when met by some waffles and Saturday morning cartoons permitted from time to time by the pack of wolves I was raised by*. "Oh, just ate a toaster strudel for breakfast and get to watch TV while laying on the carpet? Life is bomb." And that's how I feel ra na.

So, I started this blog with the intention of learning to code and making a life-altering career change. For as often as I feel like a fraud for anything I ever write, I feel equally justified and grateful because, within a year of deciding to make a change, it happened. My new boss is this gender-stereotype-smashing, humorous, city-living, world-traveling, super-cool, non-conformist that I need to stop fan-girling over or my coworkers might start to think I'm some sort of sycophant or worse . . . a MOLE. I work on a gorgeous university campus that I live close enough to walk to with a bunch of smart people whose collective sense of humor is truly my cup of tea; les clowns dans mon café. We took a post-team-meeting walk to get ice cream. If I knew adulthood was going to be like this, I'd have turned 30 sooner.

My grandma was in town recently for my cousin's wedding and, while I felt a little introspective about what a solitary oyster I might be in life for not wanting a wedding or babies, she, in all her independent-woman octogenarian wisdom, confirmed that 30 is IT. It is the year you finally realize how fully you've come into yourself. I suspected as much when I started telling my favorite barista that my full name was, indeed, Amazing Grace instead of waiting for him to add that first part himself, but whatever she says is, duh, very true.

When I went to Scotland, I truly thought the city was going to be the size of the magic kingdom and I'd be walking along the coast or into the green hills all day like some Scottish folktale woman your children would be afraid of. Of course, wasn't quite like that and the one day I did try to venture into the hills, it started pouring and I ended up taking refuge in a gay bar and drinking the most delicious lavender beer I'd ever had. Where was I going with this? Oh, yea. Things often don't turn out the way you expect and it can be a really good thing.

Four years ago, I was weeping in a dark hospital room thinking my life would never be good again. As a little maturity would reveal, the only way to handle that situation respectfully is to prove it wrong and who knew I ever even had it in me to do so?! That's right. I used an exclamation and a question mark together in my "writing." Hello, 30's.

Life isn't going to wait around. 2016, with all its dead immortals, has been the most formidable accomplice to my thoughts that have led me to panic about the passage of time. "Oh, you're afraid you'll die too young? Guys, get Bowie, I want to see how she does. Hmm, ok, keep going. Grab a few more. Make sure they are startlingly young." WELL, THANKS, but I already know I'm doomed, I'm sure of it. Where was I going with this? Oh, yes. Life isn't going to cater to your needs. You have to figure them out and fulfill them for yourself BEFORE YOU DIE, TOO.

If I feel old, tired, bored, poor, or anything less than completely elated to exist, it is up to me to punch my brain silly until it has no ability to gather those crummy thoughts all together and make me sad. Keep it good and confused; so overwhelmed it cannot retaliate.
  • Feel old? Go somewhere or listen to music that reminds you of how it felt to be the age you were when you last experienced those things. I go sit at the Starbucks I studied at in college and am reminded of both how it felt to be twenty and how supremely wonderful it is to no longer operate under the tyranny of a biology textbook whose respect for work-life balance is not a thing. My job now is a well-behaved puppy who learned to listen when I tell it to stay. I will also hardcore jam to some Disney soundtracks because once a king or queen in Disney, always a king or queen in Disney.
  • Tired? Remind yourself that no time enjoyed is wasted and do something lazy. This one is tough, but sometimes you have to accept that a night on the sofa is inescapably just what you need. Or, if you have it in you, go for a walk and literally smell the roses. THEN get thee to the couch with thy middle finger up to whatever energy passed on you.
  • Feel poor? That is a bummer. Will have to get back to you on that one, at which time I can be expected to rhapsodize something furious in blogging fashion. I started a post titled 'Down on Frugal Rock', but will need to earn cred by being more frugal m'self and also have it edited by Dad Hayden first, of course.
  • Bored? Whaaaaaat? I totally understand, me too, but seriously whaaaaat? How are we ever bored and what is up with that? Our brains cannot be trusted to handle themselves. Make a to-do list, get some sure-thing good books, do something nice for yourself, go for a long walk, listen to a podcast, cook, wash something/EVERYTHING really well, organize, pick up an instrument, plan a future vacation, or, if none of that sounds appealing, start writing or talking to a therapist and try to work out why because your deathbed self will be super pissed at you for not handling that.

It would be nice if we could all be spared from learning the "take nothing for granted" lesson the hard way, but, by golly, one of these days, I hope to find my permanent place in the chorus preaching the faithful gospel that it will all work out fine. No matter how it turns out, you, I, will be fine.

* You can't copyright life plot lines, Disney!


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