they lose their meaning

August 4, 2006

WARNING – navel-gazing ahead.

I’ve been thinking pretty heavily about Saturn Returns lately, as I just turned 28, and oddly enough, have noticed a lot of turmoil in my interior life. Well, more turmoil than normal. It’s never been a quiet, peaceful place, my interior life. It’s nice to know that this is a normal process (if one agrees Saturn Returns exist, which I’m not totally discounting, 28-30 year recurring life cycles make sense sort of) that everyone to some extent or another experiences.

Still, it’s kind of odd. For a lot of people, the ages of 28-30 are a time for them to settle down, to get married, to have children, to put themselves on a path that leads more towards “adult” than what they were doing before. And you know, I’ve been doing this for years now. Seven years, to be exact. I spent my whole 20s being very adultlike, with pretty heavy responsibilities that I became acclimated to well enough. So, I have a very Adult structure around my life already. The confusion and drama flickering in my head lately seems to be related to a different sort of thing, maybe I’m finally going to come to terms with who I am as a person. Maybe I’ve been too busy to really see who I am all these years. Indeed, a couple weeks ago I had a pretty startling realization about myself, a realization that made me feel like a shallow person, a realization that made me not like myself very much. And honestly, it was a lot easier to not have realizations like that. I think back to just a couple years ago – I wasn’t perfectly happy, but I was settled, I was satisfied. And now I feel unsettled and dissatisfied (yet supremely, unimaginably happy), and I’m thinking, I’d really like to be settled again. I kind of wish I were 38 right now rather than 28. I’m really looking forward to my 30s. I want to be at peace with myself and my surroundings, and it seems like an extra ten years of life experience could help that along. My friends in their late 30s, does this happen, or am I looking towards something that never happens?

One recent realization about myself that I am ok with though is that I am a very social person. If you’d seen me ten years ago, you’d never have guessed.


4 Responses to “they lose their meaning”

  1. csg Says:

    Boy, I think we have been walking the same path in many ways.You are exactly right though; we’re married, we have kids–these aren’t milestones or hopeful aspirations any more. When I returned to Seattle, I really expected to slide back into my smug satisfaction with a driveway and a vegetable garden, all home-repair and library books. But it isn’t like that at all. Which isn’t to say I am unhappy, I’m having a great time, but I am not easy in this life yet. After a year of watching it, though, I am starting to think this is the way it will be and am junking my expectations about how I thought I would live. Trying to turn my days into an opportunity to become more limber: mentally, spiritually, and socially. Evenually, we will become the women we admire.

  2. CSG – I think you are one of the women I admire. : )

    I’m glad to read your response, I imagine we do have a lot of the same things going on these days. I sure would like a smug satisfaction about my life…in many ways it’d be easier. Instead there’s so much reaching for things.

  3. Alesia Says:

    I think there is one big unsettled aspect of your life (career/job), which causes a ripple effect through the rest of it.

    Then again, I remember distinctly feeling very WHAT’S NEXT as I hit my 30s. I decided, after taking a woodworking class, that I wanted to master the skills that I have, rather than striving intentionally to acquire new ones.

    In my mid-30s, I decided that it was time to start living life on my terms, instead of by the rules, trying to please people. It was hard for a couple of years to make the changes that I needed to make, but the rewards are incalculable.

    Now that I’m in my 40s, life is deeply satisfying. Not perfect, not easy, not routine. But I spent a lot of time working on self love and positivity and it pays and pays.

  4. Rachel Says:

    I’m about to turn 34, and I must say that the peace you are searching for has begun to grace me with it’s presence in small ways. Mind you, I agonized over turning 30 and all the things I didn’t do when I was younger, but I am truly enjoying being a bit older and wiser and, i guess, more grounded. It doesn’t happen overnight, but one day you realize you are a little happier in your own skin than you were 10 years earlier.

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