All in Musings

Thirty, Sometimes Flirty, Not Always Thriving

Today I am thirty. I am not where I thought I’d be at this point. Jennifer Garner promised me a certain lifestyle I have yet to accomplish – I feel neither flirty nor thriving. Thirty feels like a mystical age until it’s here. I am officially a grown up even if no part of me feels like one. Like, I should now be supporting my parents financially. Well, I chose a career as a writer, so sorry Dad. Maybe by 35.  

The Words of My Faith (a series)

I’m an English major so words hold a profoundly deep place in my heart. Lately (I guess in light of our holy month), I’ve been picking apart the words of my religion in hopes of gaining a stronger belief in God through the literature of Islam. And I don’t mean the Quran, though studying our Book is indeed important; I mean the everyday Arabic words we use to describe the rituals of being a Muslim.

On My First Year Teaching

I walked into the classroom for the first time as an educator and my initial thought was, “Damn, I am hungry,” quickly followed by, “Holy crap, I have to teach these kids Old English. The heck I know about Old English?” The answer is not a lot, and I was probably craving a Taco Bell Breakfast Crunchwrap with steak. Go try it. It’s amazing.

What now?

As some of you may recall, I was facing down 30 with some level of sorrow and loss for 22-year-old Carrie who had lost sight of her dreams and passions.  I committed to changing this aspect of my life. Shortly after my 30th birthday, I found out I had been accepted into a Masters program in international crime and human rights. And the cherry on top? The program required me to spend four and a half months in Italy. This was it. This was my chance to redefine my career, to find myself again, and to commit my life to social change. So. I worked out the details with my boyfriend and family. I quit my job. I booked a plane ticket. I had several confusing and frustrating phone calls with the Consulate. I packed my bags. Until. The sponsoring organization cancelled the program one week before it was set to begin. One week.

In Defense of Fall

We’ve all been there. You’re in line with a friend at Starbucks and she orders a pumpkin spice latte or out at the bar and orders a Strongbow. She turns to you shamefaced and say, “…Sorry I know, it’s so basic”, like she’s admitting a predilection for something terrible. Why? Why do we beat ourselves up for loving something so simple? 

30

I realized this week, as it suddenly dawned on me that I was turning 30, that I am not afraid of aging (I have a really good night cream). I am sad. I am grieving my 20s. I will miss late nights with my roommates snuggled four in a bed made for two. I will miss each of the apartments – even the crappy ones with the unethical landlords. I will miss the feeling of opening a new legal textbook for the first time. I will miss all the firsts that come from a decade of growing up. I will miss all the opportunity and unknown that my 20s presented.

Reasons to be a Bitch

And why, oh why were my dear, smart, independent, strong-willed friends complying? I recognized all too well the fear of saying “no”. Of offending or being rude. Of not being thought of as kind or polite. Of making noise. We are taught, from a young age, to be polite, to smile, and to forgo our own comfort for the sake of others. Even with my ball-busting mother, society won out and my fear of disappointing someone took over.

A Day in Oman

We toured some more, tried to befriend some more dolphins, and swam/snorkeled one more time. On our way back to the port the captain was nice enough to let me drive the Dhow. Who does that? Drives a boat in Oman!? You can all refer to me as Captain Katie now. “Look at me, I’m the captain now.”