Letter to My 30 Year Old Self – Revisited

Hands-Writing-Notebook-Journal-Concrete Photo : Alanna Bagladi

As a contributor to Obvi, one of the first tasks I had was to write a letter to my thirty-year-old self. I recently reread it and I wasn’t happy. It was written while I was still terrified of being honest with myself. I was unhappy and instead chose to minimize my pain, for the sake of looking like I had my shit together for the public. So, with my thirtieth birthday looming on November 23, I decided to write to myself again. This time, I’m going to be brutally honest about my life, the changes I’ve made and how thirty… is not that old…really.

Dear Colleen,

Well, the time has come. You’re really going to be thirty years old. There’s no more waiting, it’s really happening. Although you’re scared to leave your twenties behind you really need to take a moment to reflect on all of the positive things that you have done not only in your life but just in the past year alone. You’ve come a long way, and although you still have growing to do, you know you’re capable of living your life on your terms.

This year has been both really tough and really rewarding. You were brave, you were honest and you were you. Twenty-nine was the magic number for living your most honest life. Yes, you got divorced but, that’s not anything to be ashamed of, and also you covered that topic in another article, so let’s not dwell on it! You struck out on your own with tons of student loan and personal debt but you’re surviving. You’re doing it… in a little apartment with only the things you need. Purge was definitely your word this year.

Even though you’re not necessarily doing what you are passionate about professionally, you have gained your voice in the workplace. This year you decided that what you want is important both personally and professionally and people are starting to listen. You know what you want out of life and you feel the freedom to work towards it. You know that thirty is when you start living your dream life – job included. So, don’t quit. Although you will have times that frustrate you, it’s okay. Just keep looking towards your end game and you will pull through.

You found real, supportive, thoughtful, and passionate love with someone who is truly your best friend. It’s unreal to think about your relationship and how it’s grown from friendship to this, but believe it. It happened and it’s amazing. For the first time in your life, you feel 100% supported by your partner, you never feel ashamed of who you are, and he’s helped you  love yourself, your body, and your crazy curly hair. Whatever adventures come next, you’ll be sharing them with this person, and isn’t it amazing to not feel anxious when thinking about a relationship?!

Let’s not forget to mention that you have the most adorable cat who will be celebrating her seventeenth year with you. She has been by your side through everything, good bad, ugly and beyond. She may puke on your bed occasionally but damn, she’s cute. You also just got your very own puppy to love and grow with. After losing your dogs in the divorce you’ve spent a year mourning, and looking for the right puppy to love. After lots of looking, you found her! And although she’s not fully potty trained… she’s also really damn cute.

So, let’s remember not to mourn the loss of your twenties but to embrace a new chapter and begin writing a new story in your thirties. Keep traveling to new places, stay up late to watch a meteor shower, suck it up and go camping (ugh), learn a new skill, be lazy if you feel like it, oh, and please… let’s get your book of poems published. Thirty is not the end of the world, it’s just the beginning of another year – so let’s make this one even better than twenty-nine.

Colleen Rae : Artist. Writer. Feminist. Wizard.