My birthday is on Wednesday. I’ll be 31 years old. (Or, if you like to see life through rose-colored glasses like me, we’ll call it 29.2. Yeah. Let’s go with that.)

An (almost) 31-year-old.

Last year about this time, I was lamenting the fact that I was turning the big three-oh. It was an age I never thought about too much until it was looming over me. I’d had so many goals I’d wanted to accomplish, so many dreams I’d yet to grasp, none of which I’d managed to finish on my “To Do By 30” timeline. I felt intimidated by 30. Depressed. Worried that I’d never reach my full potential, convinced that I’d never be much more than “mediocre.”

On June 13, 2011, I reluctantly welcomed 30 with friends, margaritas, and Donnie Wahlberg.

I have to admit, 30 hasn’t been all that bad. I managed to write a novel (well, most of a novel) while participating in NaNoWriMo 2011. I found my fitness mojo, and lost 21 pounds. I made some excellent new friends since turning 30 (you know who you are). I became a godmother to the two most gorgeous babies in the universe, and I’ve been busy spoiling them rotten. I’m more in love with my husband now than I’ve ever been before, and our love keeps growing stronger with every day (every BIRTHday) that passes. 

Have I managed to be published yet? No. Do I have a child to call my own yet? No. Do I have a shiny new job, a shiny new house, a shiny new life yet? No.

And that’s ok.

Because somehow, as terrified of 30 as I was a year ago, 31 is looking pretty damn good to me right now. I’m feeling optimistic. Content. Maybe even a little excited. Instead of focusing on what I don’t have, or what I haven’t accomplished, I’m focusing on one tiny three-letter word.


Thirty-one holds so much for me. For my little family. Thirty-one could hold some of the most memorable moments of our lives yet. Thirty-one is like a big birthday package, wrapped in bright paper, with ribbons and bows and a hidden surprise inside.

I haven’t had some big epiphany. I haven’t learned anything new, or gone on a spiritual journey that led me to this conclusion. I just woke up one morning, excited about the next phase in my life, even though I have no idea what the next year of my life contains. But I’m ready for the challenge. And I’m excited to find out what’s around the next corner.

So I’m wishing myself a happy birthday (a couple of days early.) And I’m patting myself on the back and wishing myself Bon Voyage. Because in a couple of days, I’ll be 31. And I’m so jazzed to see what life has in store for me in the thirty-first year of my life. 

(Especially if it means another birthday salutation from a certain you-know-who on Twitter!) (Who knows, maybe this time he’ll spell my name correctly.)

Ok, I know I totally created that for myself on Photoshop, but I’m swooning over here. Also, Ryan Gosling’s got NOTHING on Donnie Wahlberg. Just sayin’. ♪♫ Happy birthday to meeeee….happy birthday to meeeeee….♪♫

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