Friday, April 12, 2013

30 Things Every Woman Should Have and Know by the Time She's 30

There's been a major decline in the blogging world lately.  Instagram anyone?  Not that I'm a hater, but I like words.  However, I haven't been able to think of anything to write about lately.  Maybe my thoughts are subdued by my new meds, or maybe they are just lame.  Either way, enter a writing prompt.  (My nerd friends should be excited.)  I got the book 30 Things Every Woman Should Have and Know by the Time She's 30 for my birthday, as I only have one year left.  In 1997 Glamour released this list, written by Pamela Redmond Satran and it went viral, but was credited to people like Oprah and Maya Angelou, and Pam wasn't that happy about it.  I wouldn't be either.  So, Glamour put together this book based on the list and added essays for every item on the list by Glamour editors, as well as people like Oprah and Maya Angelou.  So, as I read the first chapters last night and thoughts started percolating about the past twenty-nine years and the next year, I thought, "I should blog about this."  So, I decided to add my thoughts about each one into the universe too.  Maybe we can all learn something about life as women, and about being prepared to live it the best way we can.

Pam describes her 30th birthday as one that she was not looking forward to.  She stood in her kitchen in her pajamas crying to her husband that she did NOT want to go out and just wanted to go to bed.  He finally told her that all of her friends and family were waiting at her favorite restaurant to surprise her.  So, she put on her LBD and "wiggled her hips" right to the party and life after.  I know this birthday was 29, but I felt the same way and related to her as she said, "I had a wonderful time.  As beleaguered as I felt on so many levels, I was able to let it go that night and revel in my friends, my neighborhood, my marriage-- in the adult life I'd spent more than a decade building."  And then, "...My adorable husband had transcended his own exhaustion to arrange this party."  It sounded familiar.

So, I'm going to take this list and strive to complete it and hopefully next year, my attitude will have changed, due in part to this book and the preparation it provides me, even if.  Even if I'm not a mom, even if our papers aren't in.  Even if.  (Even if I get a stomach ache thinking those words.)  She describes getting off the train of childhood at thirty and boarding the train of adulthood- the one that will take you the rest of the way, "Just like the night of my thirtieth birthday, when I thought I was heading straight to bed and found myself in a lively room, wearing a tight dress, surrounded by love and possibilities.  Just like we all start out believing we're going in one place, only to find ourselves at those great train stations of life, having arrived at another unbelievably better place."  So, here's the list:


  1. ✔One boyfriend you can imagine going back to* and one who reminds you of how far you've come.  (*If there was no Spencer.)  
  2. A decent piece of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in your family.  Sorta check.  I don't think it counts if you haven't boughten it yourself.
  3. ✔Something perfect to wear if the employer or man of your dreams wants to see you in an hour.  
  4. ✔A purse, suitcase and umbrella you're not ashamed to be seen carrying. 
  5. ✔A youth you're content to move beyond.  Working on this one.
  6. ✔✔A past juicy enough that you're looking forward to retelling it in your old age.  
  7. The realization that you're actually going to have an old age and some money set aside to help fund it.  Hmm.
  8. ✔An e-mail address, a voicemail box and a bank account-- al of which no one has access to but you.  I don't feel that for me, nobody having access to it but me is an important factor.
  9. ✔A resume that is not even the slightest bit padded.  Yet I am still unemployed.
  10. ✔One friend who always makes you laugh and one who lets you cry.  
  11. A set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra.  If I need my own, then no check.  If I share with the hubs, then all I need is the bra.
  12. Something ridiculously expensive that you bought for yourself, just because you deserve it.
  13. ✔The belief that you deserve it.  Even though I don't have it, I totally deserve it.  :)
  14. ✔A skin-care regimen, an exercise routine and a plan for handling those few facets of life that don't get better after 30.  
  15. ✔A solid start on a satisfying career, a satisfying relationship, and all those other facets that do get better.  
You Should Know:

  1. ✔How to fall in love without losing yourself.  
  2. ✔How you feel about having kids.  
  3. ✔How to quit a job, break up with a man, and confront a friend without ruining the friendship.  
  4. ✔When to try harder and when to walk away.  
  5. ✔How to kiss in a way that communicates perfectly what you would and wouldn't like to happen next.  
  6. The names of the Secretary of State, your great-grandmothers, and the best tailor in town.  Uuuhhh...
  7. ✔How to live alone, even if you don't like to.  
  8. ✔Where to go-- be it your best friend's kitchen table or a yoga mat-- when your soul needs soothing. 
  9. That you can't change the length of your legs, the width of your hips, or the nature of your parents.  I think I deserve 3/4 a check on this one.  
  10. ✔That your childhood may not have been perfect, but it's over.  
  11. What you would and wouldn't do for money or love.  
  12. ✔That nobody gets away with smoking, drinking, doing drugs, or not flossing for long. (I got in trouble for not flossing yesterday at my dentist appointment.  New resolution.)
  13. Who you can trust, who you can't and why you shouldn't take it personally.  Again, 3/4 check.
  14. ✔Not to apologize for something that isn't your fault. 
  15. Why they say life begins at 30!  
I'll revisit this in a year and hopefully I'll be able to add those nine checks to the list.  But for now, we'll talk about #1...to be continued.

4 comments:

Ruby in the Rough said...

I love this list! But there are some things I can't check off, like Know #3. Keep sharing!

Seantae Jackson said...

I love this! I, too, turn 29 in a couple months. There's a lot to be said about turning 30 and some things on that list that hugely stand out to me. I've been re-doing EVERYTHING in my life- routines, attitudes, faith, habits, and mostly house and things. It just occurred to me reading your thought, that maybe it's my way to prepare for being 30. I love hearing your spin on life and wish everybody would be as honest as you are!!!

Danielle Smith said...

I was at the park the other day and there was this little girl in this crazy boy-clothes outfit, even equipped with cowboy boots. Her mom was super friendly and struck up a conversation with me right away. She said that for a gift for being good she went to the department store and was allowed to pick out her own outfit. Her dad took her and it was one of the best days of her life. That was the whole outfit she chose and continues to wear it as often as possible. The dad assured her that they did start int he girl's section. It melted my heart. She then told me that she was also expecting a baby, like me. But I could very much tell she wasn't pregnant. She adopts her babies. Her second, who is only around 9 months old, came from a teen momma that didn't take too much care of herself (drugs and alcohol) and her baby has epilepsy and seizures. I told her about you and about how you are not only an extremely lovely person, but a college graduate, someone who married in the temple with a relationship to be jealous over, and that you are also waiting for a baby one day. This is a long story, but needless to say, I could only imagine the happiness she feels as a mom of a child who isn't the healthiest in the world, and knowing that she can have it all one day, like you.

Danielle Smith said...

I mean she has cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Not epilepsy and seizures, that is a tad redundant.