So, it has recently been thrown in my face that I am rapidly approaching the big 3-0. And while this accusation is 100% true, it is something that I have feared probably since I was 25. I have many memories of declaring, “I’m almost 30, I’m almost 30”, loudly from my friend’s Queens balcony, when I still had 4 or 5 years to go. Now it’s down to months and I think I am in complete denial. I have no idea what comes after the number 29. Perhaps 29.1, 29.2, 29.3………. Thirty is a dirty, dirty word.
When you are young, you look forward to aging. There are so many wonderful things to look forward to at that point. When you are an infant, there are countless milestones in your life that, while you have no memory of them now, are very exciting at the time. Mostly exciting for your parents, but they certainly do make your life more interesting. Like the first time you realized you had hands and fingers. That supplied endless hours of trippy fun. Or when you figured out that you could put your foot in your mouth; more hours of amusement. Now I can’t even get my foot halfway to my mouth; although I do often put my foot in my mouth in a different way. Moving on, you then you have your first roll over, first crawl, steps, word, sentence, and the list goes on and on.
Once you reach adolescence, the milestones become more important and exciting for you and less so for your parents. They are just an emotional mess because their baby is growing up. I remember how excited I was to reach double digits. 10! It was such a huge deal. Travelling down the “Death Hill” on Rt 23, I would always tell my aunt to be extra careful to ensure I would make it to double digits. Then there’s becoming a teenager…. Seemed exciting at the time, but I would never choose to relive those years. No, thank you.
Between the ages of 16 and 21 are probably the most exciting birthdays you will have. 16, you get your permit and create much fear in your parents who have the unfortunate privilege of being in the car with you. 17, you can drive all by yourself and inevitably experience your first minor car accident. 18, you are an adult, which means buying your own cigarettes and accruing gambling debts. 19, you are almost 20. 20, you aren’t a teenager anymore, thank God. And of course 21, the age of countless black outs. After that, really the only age to look forward to is 25 so you can rent a car. Still haven’t taken advantage of that exciting privilege.
So, now it’s 2009 and I have hit all of my childhood milestones. So what’s left? 3-0 is right around the corner and every day I notice something else that only brings it home that I am getting older. For example, I recently noticed that my stomach and backside have been taken over by cellulite. Uh, where the hell did that come from? Gonna have to buy a cream for that. While on the beach last weekend, I found a small cluster of spider veins. Uh, I didn’t invite you to the beach. Perhaps they have a cream for that. While posing with a large tub of peanut butter sauce from Hershey, I noticed in the photograph that I have some pretty darn intense crow’s feet. Bring on the eye cream. And isn’t the fact that I just said photograph an indication of age? I’ve also noticed my face is getting fatter, despite my recent workout activities. Is there a magic cream for chubby face???
I am lucky that I have someone at work that is also rapidly approaching 30; and approaching much more rapidly than me I might add. Sorry Alexis. It’s nice to have someone to go through all of these revelations with on a daily basis. I really think they need support groups for aging. ‘Hi, My name is Jill and I am rapidly approaching 30’. We could discuss wrinkles, and cellulite, and weakened bladders, and perhaps gain some advice from fellow almost 30 year olds in a loving and nonjudgmental environment. I would attend those meetings; unless of course I forgot due to my fading memory. We could gain invaluable advice about what to do if you need to pee and there is no bathroom in site. Or, how to properly apply eye cream, and wrinkle cream, and cellulite cream, and foot cream, and anti-aging cream, and fortifying creams.
I’m not sure how I’ll feel on the actual day of the big 3-0. I think I may need to keep a psychologist on standby. I would need them to keep me calm after hearing all my parent’s age friends and family tell me ‘30 isn’t old’ or ‘you have your whole life ahead of you’. Well, thanks but no thanks. You were all married with a house and children and a career well before 30! I got nothing. Nothing except for my pseudo-independence, which is pretty awesome. Having to adjust to sharing my schedule with another person someday is not something I look forward to.
As for now, I will continue to purchase cream after cream. I will march on proudly and cream-covered as my last days of being a twenty something are fewer and fewer. Perhaps a bucket list is in order.