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Thursday, May 14, 2009

The Big 3-0

So yesterday it dawned on me that I'm turning 30 in two months. Now it is less than two months. July 13th is the big day. No *sigh*. No *gulp*. Honestly, I'm feeling more like *shrug*.

The landmark birthdays have always been kind of a let down to me.

When I turned 16 it was 105 degrees in Chicago and this did some sort of freaky thing to our car horn so it wouldn't honk and because of this, I was not allowed to take the driver's test. I did not get my license until 3 days after my sweet 16.

When I turned 18, I came home from Madison and all my friends were totally mean to me (except my BFF who was just acting sad and confused). Yeah I'd changed and they had some stuff going on, but instead of *talking* to me about it, they were just totally rude to me and the friends I'd brought from Madison and basically ruined my birthday.

When I turned 21, I went up to the Wisconsin Dells ummm largely because I knew I wouldn't get carded in Madison since I'd be pretending to be 21 since I was 18 (hey I never said I was a good role model, but I'm always honest... perhaps to a fault), but then I didn't get carded there either! Not when I bought beer and not when we went to the Casino... which turned out to be 18 and over.

So yeah, 30, I'm just not very worked up about it. 
My therapist (yes I was in therapy for much of my late teens/early 20s--again honest to a fault) once told me that everyone is different when it comes to what age causes the big emotional crisis. My mom got a little weird about 40. My dad flipped about 50 (though I guess men have to go through a very unpleasant Dr examination when they are 50 so I can get that). When my ex-boyfriend turned 30 he freaked. Like seriously freaked. Turning 30 was basically all he talked about from the day he turned 29 forward. It was the most annoying thing ever to listen to him go on and on about how he was going to be old and try to console him that he wasn't old. UGH! In fact that's probably how it came up with my shrink. I was probably venting.

So a big part of the reason that I'm not freaking out is because I don't want to be that guy.  And also because I'm NOT that guy. My ex had all these unrealistic expectations for what his life should be like at 30 and he was completely unsatisified with how it was. 

My expectations for 30 have varied. When I was young, I figured I'd have a career, be married, and have a baby or two because that was where my mom was at at 30. When I was a teenager, I was pretty certain I'd be dead. Seriously, I was one of those nihilistic crazy kids. I really did think I'd be dead by 21. In fact 21 might have been my crisis year because I woke up and realized, "I'm not dead, maybe I better try to do something with my life."

And I did. I stopped partying and went back to school and now I look at my life on the verge of 30 and it's in a great place. I'm getting married in October to a wonderful guy. My writing career may not be paying the bills yet, but it exists. My second book, BALLADS OF SUBURBIA, will come out a week and a day after my birthday. I really can't complain.

So I don't know why I'm all *meh* about the actual birthday celebration. I guess I just don't know what I want. A few weeks ago I told my fiance to surprise me, maybe a surprise party, maybe a surprise with friends, I don't know. Then last night (this was the thing that reminded me of my birthday), it was announced that Green Day is playing Chicago on my birthday. I sent my fiance an FYI text. Seeing a show on my birthday does sound like the perfect celebration of my life (if he or someone else can afford to pay for the ticket. I don't even want to know how much they are. Do you know what my FRONT ROW Lollapalooza ticket in 1995 cost? 28$ and the ticket fees were only 4$), but I just don't know.

Give me advice, should I push the Green Day thing, the party thing, or just tell him to rope my best friend into it and between the two of them trust them to come up with the perfect surprise?

What was your best birthday or milestone birthday, it might give me ideas!


Summer said...

Awww happy birthday coming up. I don't have any suggestions. All my birthdays have been boring

Jeri said...

Green Day, definitely!! What a great experience that would be. And I'm pretty sure they're all way over 30 by now, so they'll make you feel young. :-)

Sadly I will have flown back to DC the night before your b-day, but if there's a party that weekend, I'll be there!

Mike said...

Go with the Green Day show. tickets might be expensive but its your bday, the one day to just let loose!

Danielle Joseph said...

Green Day, very cool, brings back a lot of high school/college memories for me. Happy Upcoming Birthday!!