Friday, February 10, 2012

Musings on 30

This year I will turn 30. I can see it in my face. Delicate lines and creases starting to form from almost three decades of smiling, laughing, squinting, and living.

For most of my twenties I felt invincible. Like age was something that happened to other people. 22, 26, all felt the same.

I do still feel the same. As far as my body goes. I have energy (in fact, more than I did at 22), I feel good.

But the lines. Around my nose. On my forehead. Under my eyes. They're faint and I'm certainly not worried about aging in the vain way.

No, the forming wrinkles do not cause me to worry about the loss of my beauty, but instead remind me that time has passed. Time is passing.

I can't help but think that someone should have been around to see those wrinkles form. To have known the wrinkle-free me and then to have seen the laughs, the cries, and the life that formed those lines.

I do not lament growing older. Not at all. I don't lament a thing. I am not sad. It is not a sad thing. But it is weighty. Like the moment I realized I would never have a baby in my twenties. Weighty.

At the same time, along with the wrinkles, I have noticed other changes as I age. Changes in my heart. In my confidence. In my identity and gratefulness and ability to handle situations with grace. Those things make the coming wrinkles well worth it.

Like a well-loved book with a cracked spine from being read over and over and over again. From being referenced and highlighted and underlined and shared and carried around in a backpack. Those lines and cracks indicate love and life and usefulness. Purpose. That is also weighty.

The passing of time lies heavy in my heart. Not in a sad way, but in a way that makes me treasure. Looking back over the past three decades of my life, there are so many memories to enjoy. To be grateful for. To be humbled by and in awe of.

All at once turning 30 feels laden both with wistfulness and thanksgiving.

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