I’m 35 years old.
People around me are using terms like “advanced maternal age” and “yearly mammogram.” I know I’m getting older because all of my friends are, but you know what? FUCK THAT NOISE.
I’m not old. I’m loving my mid-thirties, and here are a few reasons why.
When I go shopping, I know exactly what will fit my body. I no longer waste my time trying to jam these hips into “boyfriend jeans.” It ain’t happening. Ever. It’s liberating to breeze past that bullshit and head directly for the “curvy” cut. Those suckers will slide right on and I won’t even break a sweat. Boom. Done.
I spend less time in hell, otherwise known as the fitting room. I remember a time, back when I was fresh-faced and only had two bills to pay, when I went shopping every single Friday. Apparently, I had nothing better to do with my time or my money than to peruse the sale racks at Gap and try on things just for fun. I know, I hate me too. That silly, rested BITCH.
I am a better person. I used to lie awake in bed at night and dream up my outfits for the week. Outfit planning. That’s what kept me up at night. I’m not gonna lie, it was grand — but also self-absorbed, shallow, and unimportant. I like my 35-year-old self a lot better. My current nighttime train of thought is significantly weightier: I forgot to sign the permission slips AGAIN. I have to remember to do it before school tomorrow. What is our escape route if there is a fire? Is the mole on my husband’s back cancerous? I better Google it in the morning. Right after I sign those permission slips. But not until I have my coffee. Are we out of creamer? OH MY GOD, WE ARE.
See? Much better.
I know who matters. The people who matter now are stuck with me for LIFE: through sickness and in health, for richer and for poorer. And I’m not just talking about my husband. My true friends — the same ones who loved me even when I was a silly, rested bitch — still love me now as a tired, frazzled one, and they’re like family. What life lessons and terrible breakups have joined together, let no man put asunder.
I have more fight in me at 35 than ever before. I don’t know if it’s age, experience, a buildup of hormonal rage, or what, but if something riles me, God help whoever stands in my way. As the years tick by, I have begun to grasp the weight of things that are weighty and the infinite value of things that are precious to me. The things that are important are worth fighting for, and at halfway to 70 years old, I better make the most of the time I have left.
I have finally learned how to use profanity in a way that suits me. That takes time and practice. 35 years of practice, to be exact.
I can hail a cab, fall down in public, use a cocktail shaker and light a match without screaming like a girl. This is monumental. Shut up.
Being 35 is awesome. You should totally try it.
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