here’s to thirty


This girl will always revel in nature… The moon rising behind my apartment the other night.

I turned thirty today. Wondered where the years have gone. I was never going to be thirty — ever. And here I am.

It’s a good thing, though — getting older. My twenties were good years, but hard. I “shifted” a lot as life changed. (You can see where I’m going with this.) I wrote in a post in 2012 when I was living in Hong Kong: “What I didn’t expect was the identity crisis — some things aren’t supposed to change.” I was referring to being young, to my family always being together, to being alone . . . We get used to things, us humans. We like routine; we form ideas about who we are.

And then things change.

In a few months’ time, I will be a sister-in-law. Someday, I may be an aunt. I will likely have stepbrothers and stepsisters before long . . . Hell, I might even get married!

Yes, my life, my perspective, my age is changing, but one thing will remain the same: I’ll always be me and everything that goes along with me. Hopefully, by thirty, I’m okay with that.

And you know what, I think I am!


Image: Mine. All rights reserved!!

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67 thoughts

  1. Happy Birthday!

    I read some things I wrote in my late teens and early 20’s and I sounded like a goof ball. Age is supposed to give you new outlooks on things. I use “supposed” because some adults never grow as a person.

    As long as you keep active and keep learning you will hardly feel like you are getting old in a traditional sense.

    • “The minute you stop learning you start dying” has always been my motto, Steve. So I totally agree. It *is* weird to hear songs I listened to in high school being played on the radio station that’s playing “today’s hits and yesterday’s favorites.” Since when did songs like Oleander’s “I Walk Alone” become oldies?!

      • That is scary with the music. Even worse is when you see young performers you grew up with come back on stage and they are 25 pounds heavier and have grey in their hair. Ughhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

      • Hahaha. So true!! I’ve worn to myself to always maintain myself so that, at all of my class reunions, I’ll be the one who hasn’t gained all that weight!

  2. Hope you had a good birthday, birthday buddy. I feel similarly about turning thirty: the twenties were good but hard. I am looking forward to this new decade. :-)



    • Thanks, Jason. Your 30th was on the 28th, too? Happy Birthday! I was actually almost born on the 29th… I still think that that would have been cool.

      I wish you the best as you enter this next decade, too! :) Thanks for reading and commenting!

    • Thanks, Randall! And if you’re ever in California, you really must let me know. I will make it back to Asia someday, but at this point it may be a while. :(

  3. Happy Birthday:)

    Ah, to be thirty again and have a whole future ahead of me!

    Don’t waste the years ahead. You are the creator of your future. Think of when you’ll be sixty (not so far away, I can assure you)- just thirty more years- and what you hope to have accomplished by then. It’s all about one step at a time and not resisting change.

  4. have a wonderful birthday, Jess!
    i love the wisdom and maturity that is entailed with aging, that naturally comes through each passing year. indeed, we are not in the same place we were before, say 10 years ago, 5 years ago, or even last year. although our outer appearance might be changing, your heart remains young. =) may your 30th year be filled with much adventure, excitement, and growth.

    • Thank you so much, sweet Sophia. You are right — aging brings maturity and growth, if we let it. I like what Carol said: We are the creators of our future. I never want to forget that.

      And I am behind on reading your posts! I will try to catch up soon!

  5. I am a little late in reading this post. Anyways, wish you a many many happy returns of the day. :)

    Wish you all the happiness this year, and the year after, and the year after, and the year after….. :D

    • Thank you, Allwin! Means so much. And I’m sorry I’m behind on your blog!! My life has been crazy lately (you’ll see why in my next post). I am way behind period. :/

  6. Happy late Birthday Jess. Age is just a number and life is constant motion so shift’s are inevitable. Hope you are doing well and had a terrific B-day.

    • Thank you, John!! Your kind words mean so much. I agree that age is just a number. Perspective and shifting are everything. ;) Hope you’re having a great day!!

    • Thanks, Jean. And that’s what everyone keep saying. Sometimes I really wish I could slow life down!

      I’ve been meaning to stop by your blog for a few days now. Life’s been so crazy lately. I’ll catch up soon! Happy Belated Birthday!!

    • Thanks so much, Mike! And sorry I haven’t been by your blog more recently. Life’s been crazy, and going to continue that way for some time. But I’ll catch up one of these days — promise!

  7. Happy belated birthday Jessica! Change is good when you embrace and make the best out of it. People do cling to routine for fear of unknown, that’s true. And youth plays a part in the courage to take on challenge. As we grow older, we become more compliant, not everyone, and the latter remain young at heart! I wish you all the best, and no matter what, I hope you live life to the fullest with great meaning and pleasure. I know you are resilient and full of drive. Happy brand new year, my friend :D

    • I can’t believe I missed this one, Sam. Thank you so much. Your words are so wise. I always want to remain young at heart!

      Hope your week is off to a great start!

      • Hehe, that’s alright. I often get late comments or am not informed until I needed something from a previous post and then see comments that I’d missed. Nonetheless, my best wishes for you, young lady! May you dare to dream big and strive to live bigger :D

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