The Birthday Blues
If anyone would have asked me at 22 what my life would have been like by 31, they would have received a complete rundown. My answer would have been something like this: married to an extremely handsome, prosperous man, mother to one kid (a son), pregnant or working on baby number two (a girl), partner at a law firm or in house counsel, close to being a judge, owner of a very nice/large home where my husband and I would host guests continuously. Fast forward to present day, and none of those things on that list are my present life.
Last week, I turned 31, and I must admit that I had a mini meltdown. At 31, I was supposed to be so “much more accomplished”, so much “further along.” The entire week leading up to my birthday, I dreaded for the day to come, waking up in the middle of the night breathing a sigh of relief that I was still 30, only to be reminded of the fact that in a few days I would no longer be able to claim that age. Turning 30 was hard enough. I left my 20s, and started an entirely new decade. But, turning 31 took the cake because I was officially in my 30s. I wasn’t just 30. I was 30, something. I wasn’t the cool lawyer in her 20s. Now, I was officially like everyone else…old news.
The night before my birthday, I was in a complete funk. People kept asking me, “What do you want to do for your birthday?” I would respond with, “I haven’t thought about it.” But, in reality I just wanted to stay in my bed and cry. But, God has a way of reminding us that even when we think things are bad, we have a reason to be grateful.
My sister called me and started reminding me of all my accomplishments thus far and told me that I was putting too much emphasis on a number. She was right. We all have so many things to be grateful for; the most important thing being life. Just within the last two months, two of my high school classmates passed away in their early 30s, and here I am, alive, and complaining because my life was not what I expected it to be at this point.
Also, I was putting so much emphasis on what “I” thought my life should be and never took the time to ask God what his plan was for my life at 31. Obviously, it was not His plan for me to be married yet, have children yet, or have any of those self-centered desires on my list. Could it be that I am just where God wants me to be, and you are too?!
I encourage anyone who is struggling with getting older and thinking that your circumstances should be different, to put your faith in God and his plans for your life. His word is so clear in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” God will never do anything to harm you. He absolutely wants what’s best for you. However, sometimes what we think is the best and the best timing is not God’s best and His timing for us. I understand that one of the hardest things to do in life is to wait for God. After all, He’s the only one who shows up late, but ends up being right on time.
Don’t let the birthday blues get you down. Celebrate. You’ve been given another year of life to live, enjoy loved ones, eat good food, travel the world, and chase your dreams. Before you know it you will have those things your heart desires. Rest.
Cheers to a Rescued Heart,
Chavon Ciara Williams