…unknowingly growing!

Joey: Come on, Rach, look turning 30 is not that big a deal.
Ross: Oh, really? Is that how you felt when you turned 30?
[Flashback of Joey’s birthday]
Joey: Why, God, why? We had a deal. Let the others grow old, not me!

The One Where They All Turn Thirty” is the fourteenth episode of the seventh season of FRIENDS, which aired on February 8, 2001. It’s Rachel’s thirtieth birthday and she is very depressed about aging. In a series of flashbacks, each of the friends’ equally depressing thirtieth birthdays are shown.

I turned 31, just a 3 days ago (now I’m 31 year and three day old on earth) and I love turning this age [but my phone screen says don’t grow up, it’s a trap and my all friends always poke me to change it but I will not ;)] and today I wanted to share what I love about being it.

Turning 30 was hard for me (as we all know pandemic and no new place were explored, it is my birthday ritual to explore new places on it). It felt like this loaded milestone and made me assess and criticize where everything was in my life. You know the old “by the time I’m 30 I’ll be…whatever expectation you placed on yourself 5–10 years before.” Turning 31 felt rather insignificant in comparison, just another age, and that was a relief. I had already said goodbye to my twenties, and had accepted being in this new decade and have had a great first year in it. I was ready for 31.

‘Isme tera ghata, Mera kuch nahi jata’ sung by Gajendra Verma is a real life story and what other people think about me gets less important each year. I spent my birthday morning walk with music saying the following mantras to myself:

· I deserve love, self-love… (Infinite love)

· I deserve peace (or let’ say peace of mind)

· I deserve a joyful birthday (new place not explored but explored new look for self)

Just like “How far I’ll go” (Moana movie) song I’ve become increasingly reflective each year, and more than any other birthday I acknowledge how far I have come instead of fixating on how far I still want to go. Trust me I really feel young enough to still have plenty of time to achieve the things I want to achieve in life (plan adventure trips too, which will be unplanned as always! ).

These days I am more comfortable setting boundaries that protect my energy, because I trust myself more as I age and work on the way I talk to myself (and I find that I’m less self-critical than I was a year ago). Now I know how to take care of myself better now and how to listen to my needs (self-pampering with a cup of coffee, nice peaceful view and long drive). I am more expressive now than I ever was before, and I voice my opinions, share my emotions and speak the truth. Saying ‘NO’ to things that don’t serve me is getting easier, as I know that prioritizing myself is not selfish but essential.

Life is short and I am aware of that more and more, and that awareness spurs me to go after the things that matter. Other side of life is also long, and I am simultaneously aware of that, and that awareness gives me permission to not spend days, months, years on things that are not aligned with my values and goals.

I know that whether I am 31, 61, or 91, I will always be committed to learning new things and will always be dedicated to being a good person. And every single year I am grateful to be alive in this crazy, wonderful thing we call life!

Saludos a la vida!

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