To those of you who know me personally, you probably know my age. I'm not old - in fact, most people are surprised by how young I really am (I dare not ponder whether my appearance lends anything to people's assumption about my age, in a negative way!). But in terms of where my life is, I am definitely "older". Most people my age are still single, having late nights out at clubs, spending money on designer clothes, etc. Meanwhile, I'm married, having later nights in trying to get my two kids in bed, and I spend my money of baby stuff.
Don't get me wrong - I love it! I've always known I'd be a young mom. Its always been a part of me - this maternal instinct. But now that I am getting on with age, I keep thinking more and more about what the numbers of my age represent. Clearly they do not indicate anything about where anyone should be in life. So what do they mean?
Wisdom? I can't pretend I'm any wiser than the next person. I may know more about certain things than other people, but there are plenty of others who know more about, say, science, than I do. I also make stupid mistakes every day. Some days I make a lot of them, some days less. Whatever it is, although it may upset me (or someone else) in that moment, it does serve to remind me that I am not perfect, and that I shouldn't ever pretend to be. I do know enough to know that I (and others, ideally) should never serve judgment on other people's decisions, never discriminate others just because they don't live the way I do, and always, always, remember that everyone makes mistakes.
Clarity about where I'm going in life? Hah! I am just as clueless as anyone else about where my life is headed. I live day by day, and I try to make sure each day is lived like its my last, because (pardon me for being a little bit morbid) it very well could be. The "future" is non-existent. I can try and plan as best I can - save up for the children's education, pursue my own education so that I may have a more desirable career, plan to get a house, a car, all those things that come with being a family - but the fact of the matter is, I have absolutely no idea what's going to happen tomorrow, or a year from now, or ten years down the line. Who does? (Seriously, who does? I'd like to have a word with them about how much weight I'll put on by then and whether they've come up with a miracle cream to banish wrinkles. And cellulite).
Becoming more skillful? I like to think that my writing is getting better with age, or that the things I make look better now than they did before. I'd like to think that I've improved most of my skills over the years. But actually, I think that as I get older, I get a little less creative - there just isn't enough time or free space in my brain! I may be better at knitting, but I'm a lot more hesitant about free-styling anything, because I don't know what it'd end up looking like, and it would just be a "waste of time". How sad is that? I observe my children now, who do anything for the sake of the experience, and not the end product. Take my toddler, for instance. He builds something with his Lego blocks, or scribbles something on paper with his crayons, and when he's done, he takes a moment to admire and ponder his creation, and proudly announces what it is - as if he had any idea what he was creating all along!
What I do know is that with age, my wishlist for my birthday is being filled with more intangibles than it is tangible, purchasable, stuff. I crave stability, more patience, more love and positivity in my life. I want peace and harmony in my household, creativity and tenacity in my children, and clarity and wisdom in myself. And the strangest thing of all, the thing that has truly shown me that I am at a turning point my life, is that I wish all these thing for everyone else too.
So here's to growing older - and becoming a more glamorous mama - year by year!
That's me pointing at the pouty and moody three-year-old me in a family photo