Wednesday, November 29, 2017

30


I've sat down to write this post a handful of times but haven't gotten very far without feeling like my heart might burst (or, that I might tear up).  Today I turn the big 3-0, and I'm celebrating the day surrounded by 7 wonderful friends in Palm Springs... and more than anything, I feel an overwhelming sense of peace and happiness.

I look back at my 20s and while there were many highlights, I'm happy to leave them behind, turn the page, and step in to the next chapter.  What's that chapter going to look like for me?  Anything is my guess.  I've stopped creating rigid expectations for my future because I've discovered it prevents me from being as open to change as I'd like to be.   When you try to control things, you can only take 1 path- the one you know.  And I'd like to spend some time exploring what I still don't know.  My new tool for measuring success in my life is continually asking myself, "am I staying curious?  am I learning something new on a regular basis?  am I practicing vulnerability?  am I stretching in the direction of kindness, forgiveness, and goodness?"

Moving to New York was without a doubt the best decision of my 20s.  It was exactly the change of pace I needed after reeling from a premature divorce.  At that time I had completely lost myself-  the person in the mirror wasn't a girl I recognized or liked.  There's really nothing scarier then getting to a place in your life you thought you'd wanted to be in all along and suddenly realizing none of it fits you; none of it feels right.  I thought I'd figure it out as I went along, wading further and further in to the confusion until eventually I was drowning- and I started to wonder if I'd ever walk firmly on my own two feet again.  I started grabbing at things so that they wouldn't float away, unknowingly preventing the inevitable flow of change that needed to happen.

It was a sad time- one full of grief, shame, bargaining, and loneliness.   But one I had to walk through alone, to recalibrate and see for myself what I was actually made of.  The craziest part?  I don't have 1 single regret.  The weird truth is I'm a better person for the mistakes I've made.  Not only did I come out the other side of the darkness stronger - but a little softer, too.  If you're going through any of this - confusion, heartache, divorce, fear surrounding a difficult decision you need to make - know this:  patience with yourself first.  Clarity will come.  You have endless amounts of strength inside of you that you aren't even aware of- I've discovered this one time and time again.

I look back with fondness on those first few months after moving to New York at 27.  Everywhere I turned there was a new adventure waiting to happen, the streets [and myself] pulsating with endless energy.  Honestly, over 2 years in, I still feel reinvigorated by this city on a regular basis.  One day I'll write a book about the crazy experiences I've had here, both personal and work-related, but I have a feeling it'll be a much more interesting story another 30 years down the line.

This year something in me shifted in a very real way.  There's been less striving, and more contentment. I tried meditation (I highly recommend MINDFL classes for all you New Yorkers).  I moved in to a new apartment without roommates.  I learned to cook!  I designed for HGTV. I designed for an AD Top 100 firm. I spent lazy Sunday afternoons sprawled out in Central Park reading.  I experienced a few hard goodbyes, but there was also a friendship mended in the mix.  Maybe best of all, I can finally say with 100% authenticity I am perfectly okay (and maybe even pretty happy?) all on my own. 

I honestly thought I would be so depressed to leave my 20s.  Not only because the world worships youth but also because it feels like a very real "landmark" - A chance to compare yourself to your peers and the vague expectations you had for what your life would look like.  But I look back and feel nothing but gratitude at this moment for my 20s.  I'm healthy, I'm strong, I'm ready for anything... and I have 7 of the most extraordinary women by my side today.   I'm so ready for my 30s!




Cheers to all that lies ahead, and a heartfelt thanks for following along with me on this journey!

XOXO,

Sam

3 comments:

  1. Happy Happy Birthday Sam!!!! What an awesome post!! I have been following your blog for about 2 or 3 years and have always enjoyed reading and getting inspired by your post. But I have to say on this one you out did yourself! What a wonderful way to celebrate your birthday!!! You have mastered what most people are trying to figure out in their 50's even 60's. I am so happy for you!!! May you continue to receive all the best that life has!!! Many, M any more!!

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  2. Oh Sam! HAPPY 30TH BIRTHDAY! Many blessings and hope you continue to experience many more wonderful and positive things. :)

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  3. First, Sam, Happiest of Birthdays! It seems you’ve made great strides in the past few years. I’m so happy you’re at peace with your decisions and where you are now. I turned 60 in June and, in many ways, feel like you do. I’m very happy with my life and everything I’ve done in the past that has gotten me to this place was all for good. I read something a few years ago that I was reminded of when you mentioned ‘staying curious’. It went something like this...if you’re not interested, you’re not interesting. This is why I read, stay up on current events and try to learn something every day. You seem to be on the right road and I wish you all the best!

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