Woke up this morning to lovely birthday messages from friends and family. I turned 30, something that I always wanted to be because I had read somewhere that you’re at your prime when you’re 30. And they couldn’t be more right.
While I’m not glowing with flawless skin or flaunting my lustrous hair or wearing a size 8, I feel confident in who I am. It’s been 30 years full of life lessons, some setbacks, but many things to be thankful for. Above all else, it has been about learning to forgive others, letting go of what’s in the past and even the future. It has also been about learning from my own mistakes.
I was a chubby, awkward and scared little child. I had absolutely zero aspirations. If you had asked me what I’d want to be when I grow up, I’d be going down in depression looking for an answer. My grades were average. I wasn’t fond of any subjects, in fact most of my report cards mention that I am able to do everything but with more like a “meh” attitude :D.
When I landed into my teens, I was done with my good-girl attitude. I made up my mind to pick up something and be really good at it. In all of that drive, I think I ended up being a version of myself that I wasn’t. All teenagers do, I guess! I listened to music that I hated, I had my head up in the clouds, I kept unrealistic expectations from life and people, and I became friends with anyone and everyone (which wasn’t so bad because some of my strongest friendships were formed in that era).
I used to be an over-confident pain in the bottom in my twenties, which I think is needed in those times. Because you’re working hard for your career, you have zero savings, there are things you dream of having. You need a certain go-getter attitude in those times. Alhamdolilah it all worked out for me, even if at that time it didn’t quite seem so.
I got married exactly when I was 26. Somewhere in my mind, I had planned to get married at exactly 26 years of age. And coincidentally, Allah had also planned the same. Life afterwards was a completely different ball game. Now my life was parallel to someone else’s. Now, each step I took was alongside another and each goal in our lives was a collective effort. It wasn’t about me anymore, it was about “us” from here on. It took me a while to grasp this but when I did, I realized how blissful life can be when you share it with someone.
Looking back, I wouldn’t say that I regret any of the above periods. I’d say that it was much needed. All of those situations brought me to this particular moment. It all makes sense when you consider each time in your life as a tiny piece of a huge jigsaw puzzle. My life isn’t extra-ordinary, in fact it is quite ordinary. Like most people in the world, I wake up each morning and make breakfast. Like all people, I do groceries, cooking, laundry. Basic adult life stuff. I repeat the cycle every single day. It may sound very boring, but what makes it magical is the gratitude in my heart. We do basic jobs that allow us to live quite comfortably. I am not a billionaire (yet!), but if I ever become one, I know it would be a by-product of the work we do and not because we want to be rich.
Going forward, I do not know where life will take me but I am sure that being of service to others will take some part of it. Whether it’s about doing work or caring for our families, there has to be some output of it, and majorly it should be happiness, ours and others’. And after three decades of my life, I know that being truly happy is through showing kindness towards others and having gratitude in your heart for everything in your life and for everything you do ❤
Happy Big 30 to me!