Life after Thirty

In the next six months I will round out my third decade on this planet.
My twenties were more than a roller coaster; they were an entire friggin’ amusement park filled with Ferris Wheel ups, Log Flume downs and endless nights
The word “thirty” felt as mythological as an axe-wielding Pegasus.drunkenly staring at myself in the House of Mirrors.
I couldn’t wait for my twenties to end, but the prospect of turning thirty seemed implausible. The word “thirty” felt as mythological as an axe-wielding Pegasus.
“Thirty” meant marriage to a dude whose back hair/head hair ratio was 2:1 and a baby girl named Emerson and baby boy named Emerson II and a house in the suburbs with HOA-enforced sterile front lawns and fat, jell-o-like bellies and night sweats accompanied with shouts of “MY GOD! WHAT HAVE I DONE?!” and all of those other gross things adults do.
I never thought I would make it to thirty, not because I was on a path to self-destruction (unless self-destruction consists of eating entire tubs of cream cheese and obsessively trying to mimic the dance moves and facial expressions of Prince in Purple Rain home alone); I didn’t think I was going to die at All of my twenties had been the dream of a blissfully ignorant 5-year-old girl.thirty, no, instead I thought at twenty-nine, the clock would simply start turning back. That these insufferable ten years I endured as an adult were all for the award of resorting back to childhood, when life was simple, carefree and full of guilt-free nose-picking. All of my twenties had been the dream of a blissfully ignorant 5-year-old girl.
Yet here I am, staring at the home stretch to thirty and it’s not as bad as I thought it was going to be, like the time when I was twenty-seven and told my father that when I hit thirty my car and credit card bills would be paid off and upon saying the word “thirty” I instantly fell into a fetal-ball on the floor and wept tears of defeat while my father patiently waited for the bellowing to subside. I’m sure he thought I sounded like an asshole and I’m sure I’ll look back on that day when I’m thirty-five, forty-five, SEVENTY-FIVE and think, “Man, I was such a little asshole. To be twenty-seven again!”
I don’t drop like a sack of bricks when I say the word “thirty” anymore.
Looking straight into the cold, dead eyes of my fourth decade on this planet has not been as scary as I thought. Life is pretty good right now, and if things continue this way, my thirties promise to be enjoyable and full of long stretches of inactivity, shouting obscenities at college students for no reason and running as far away from crowded, loud public areas as possible.
“Man, I was such a little asshole. To be twenty-seven again!”
Women thirty and older say that their thirties were their best years and I believe them. Women in their thirties are most beautiful because of the confidence they ooze through their skin; they know who they are, they know what they want and they won’t take crap from anyone. My twenties were mostly spent kowtowing to others and second-guessing every decision I made. I was self-aware of my shaky thought process and therefore disliked myself all the more for being a piddly wimp. Why couldn’t I garner the strength to stand up for myself and what I believed in?
Because I had no idea who I was or what I believed in and at twenty-nine and 7 months, I have an idea. A glimmer of something and I will honor and defend that glimmer like a starving squirrel guarding its cache of nuts.

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Lauren_Modery-CitygramLauren Modery

Culture & Lifestyle Columnist
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Lauren is a freelance writer and screenwriter from Austin, Texas.
She was born in Central NY during the Reagan administration and as a child enjoyed wearing suits and fantasized about being middle-aged Jewish men, most notably four out of the five Marx Brothers, Rod Serling and Woody Allen.
She co-wrote and co-produced the feature film Loves Her Gun. Her work has appeared in several outlets including The Guardian, and xoJane.
Photography: Chris Perez