I’m 30 today. I’m me, now.
That’s not to say that I wasn’t me yesterday, but I definitely wasn’t me 10 or even 5 years ago.
Today, I’m writing for myself. I haven’t written much lately and that idea has something to do with it. The feeling of writing for other people strips away the joy. I like joy. I want it. (Not to be confused with happiness or contentment, which I don’t care about as much anymore.)
This is for me. One has a need to take inventory of self every now and then. Today seems marginally more appropriate than yesterday. So, these are a few things that I know to be true about myself and that they probably won’t be changing for a nice comfortably long time:
I get angry.
I used to hide or suppress my anger. That was probably a bad idea. And arguably, anyone who lives on this planet has good reasons to be angry about one issue or another. I’ve learned that I’m angry about lots of things. I’m angry that the internet makes people shitty to one another. I’m angry that capitalism works well enough that it will probably be around forever and keeps control of everything in the greasy palms of large corporations. I’m angry when people refuse to see inequality and prejudice. I’m angry mostly when I perceive that I’m being mischaracterized or pigeonholed. At 30 years old, my favorite part about being angry is that I can be angry without acting out of anger. It’s not always easy to make that choice, but I enjoy having the option.
I won’t ever be one thing.
I’m a writer, dancer, stylist, model, actor, entrepreneur, business analyst, photographer and graphic designer. That’s only a list of things I’m passionate about where I could potentially earn a living. I’m ignoring quite a few “hobbies” that could turn profitable with the right combination of effort and opportunity. I can’t tell you what I’ll be doing in 5 years. Honestly, I don’t even want to know. I’m not going to set goals and I don’t like keeping a schedule. There’s one thing I can tell you about future version of me: He’s better than I am (without setting goals or being on a schedule).
I like taking risks.
I don’t do it enough, but that will change. As a very introverted person, taking risks socially has become one of the biggest challenges. There are moments everyday where I would like to say or do something in a social setting that seems risky and I don’t. But now, at least I’m present in spaces with other humans where taking these risks are possible. Sadly, there were points in the last 30 years where that really wasn’t the case. Baby steps, people.
I fall in love.
I recently found out that some people don’t fall in love. I might be the opposite. I fall in love all the time, and it feels amazing.
“I love you. It’s no big deal. It doesn’t mean you’re The One, or even one of the ones. It doesn’t mean you have to love me back. It doesn’t mean we have to date, or marry, or even cuddle. It doesn’t mean we have to part ways dramatically in a flurry of tears and broken dishes. It doesn’t mean I’ll love you until I die, or that I’ll still love you next year, or tomorrow.” — Carsie Blanton, Casual Love
When I gave myself that freedom, the quality of nearly all my relationships and interactions with other people improved. To be clear, I don’t just fall in love with every person I meet, but leaving a little space for the possibility changes everything. I spent so many years, trying desperately to avoid those feelings with anyone other than my primary partner and it imprinted my relationships with a level of artificiality that just didn’t work for me. I’ve been slowly expanding this concept to individuals of all genders and more variety in the number of trips around the sun and that feels pretty awesome too. Maybe one day I’ll even open myself up to U.S. Congressmen…Nah, probably not.
I am a failure.
I finally understand, this is a good thing. Every misstep, short-lived business venture, breakup, dead-end job, and dollar wasted is what helped turn me into the person I am today. I have no regrets. I am also very successful.Anyone who is successful has also failed. If I’m failing it means I’m taking risks, which is something I want to do more of anyway. It means the potential for more success is greater. It means I’m learning and getting better and generally increasing the amount of good stuff in my life. Nobody hates that…except haters.