If there’s anything I’ve learned being on this earth for a little over three decades it’s that things must change, and though I love staying up late, drinking way too much caffeine, and avoiding going to the gym at all cost while never gaining any weight, my body has decided enough is enough. It’s time to get my act together. Because apparently, Old Father Time is coming for me, and at some point, we all have to act our age.
- First off, Taco Bell is no longer a regular on the menu. Actually, any of your fast food faves that used to energize you and make you ready to take on the day now make you feel miserable, and you’re going to need a nap and at least two full servings of real super green vegetables to make you feel even close to functioning again for at least 24 hours. Just skip the chalupa and eat a salad or something.
- Staying up past 10 pm will now make you feel like you were out all night dancing and drinking some fancy cocktail with too much liquor and then walked back to your house barefoot carrying your heels that seemed like a good idea for some reason at the beginning of the night. Your sleep routine is going to need some work after 30, which sucks even more if you have kids because guess what… they don’t sleep, and they won’t let you sleep either.
- You will always be in a perpetual state of cleaning something. As a mom of two human children and two furbabies, I can honestly tell you I don’t remember the last time my entire house was clean at one time. As I type this, I can hear the kids jumping and playing in the other room. I know when I enter the living room all the throw pillows will be on the floor, there will be crumbs on the couch, and at least one of the dogs will be laying on a blanket they’re not supposed to be on. Your mid-30s are messy, I’m coming to terms with it.
- I guess I need a skincare routine? This is a legitimate question from me. I am so terrible at washing my face daily. My skincare “routine” is usually me wiping off my makeup with a baby wipe before I go to bed, if I remember, and then putting on some sunscreen when I wake up in the morning. I’ve noticed a lot of my constituents (read my group text of girlfriends) are getting really into retinol and anti-aging moisturizers, so I’m assuming it is time for me to invest in some as well. Since I will be 35 in a very short period of time I’m all about being myself and not really caring about what other people think of the way I look, but that doesn’t mean that I want to look a decade older than I actually am.
- This is definitely not my favorite thing about my thirties, but easily the most important is getting ahold of your finances. Being a millennial can have its upsides, but our financial status is not something you usually hear us bragging about. It’s more so the lack thereof we’re complaining about. So, paying attention to where all your money is going, making a budget, and planning for your future is kind of a big deal. I promise it will be worth it, in the long run, to be slightly more frugal and pay off a little extra on your student debt, so maybe in 40 years, you can actually think about retiring instead of getting a second job to pay off all the interest that’s racked up.
- You will turn in to some form of your parents. One day, you’re 14 and rolling your eyes so hard it hurts at the mortifying way your mom rolls down her window and blows you kisses when she drops you off at school, and the next you’re 35 and calling out to your daughter in the drop off line how much you love her until she waves you off with a scowl. When you drive away you’ll laugh at her reaction and understand why your parents did these embarrassing things to you.
My favorite thing about being in my thirties has definitely been not caring about other people’s expectations. I’m an adult, I do what I want, I wear what I want, and I don’t have to please anyone to make myself feel better. If you don’t like me, that’s your problem, I’m not obligated to make anyone feel good about themselves. And, to add to that thought, I don’t expect anyone to feel obligated to make me happy. We’re all grown-ups who should know how to be respectful to each other even if we don’t see eye to eye.
Any way you look at it, aging is inevitable so we might as well make the best of it. Make sure you’re spending it with people you love, doing cool stuff, and maybe googling why retinol is so important.