Approaching 30

In a couple of weeks, I turn 30.  I know, I know, no one can believe it because I only look 25.  Ha!  The funny thing is, up until recently, people never believed my age.  I had always looked younger, but I made the observation this year that no one doubts my age, anymore.  College-aged girls respond to me with “ma’am,” and I have to admit, they look to me as if they were 15.  What happened?  When I asked my sister if I look my age, she slowly replied, “Well…you have had three kids….”

I hadn’t anticipated the 30th birthday bothering me in any way because I’ve always viewed birthdays as, well, just another day.  Who cares?  As I look around the corner and see the new number staring me in the face, I want to jump back and hide, and I know the reason:  I feel completely unattractive.  The last time I felt this unattractive I was 14, and there was a good reason I felt this way–I WAS unattractive.  Check out my high school library card; you’ll agree.  If I felt better about how I looked now, I could face 30 with grace–I would dare it to try to scare me–and could have fun on that day.  As it is, I’m focusing on what to do for my daughter’s birthday that follows mine instead.

In my defense, I am the victim of circumstances right now.  I did just have a baby, and I have done really well taking off most of the baby weight in less than three months.  However, when I look down, I see this confused sack of flab hanging off my belly that doesn’t know where to go.  It knows my body wants to be thin, but it’s hanging on for dear life.  I really want to wear a bikini to the pool and feel youthful, but I don’t want the children to scream and hide underwater as I approach.  And then there is my glorious bosom, the product of breastfeeding for most of the last three years.  I had to laugh as I was reading from Song of Solomon in the Bible; the lover describes his new wife’s breasts as two fawns from a gazelle.  Ha!  A bouncing gazelle is not the animal that comes to mind when I think about my pair…hmm…I think a gorilla might be a more appropriate image.

Then there’s my hair.  I decided I wanted to grow out my  hair so that it would cascade down my back and around my shoulders in thick waves of beauty.  Yeah, right.  The only thing that is cascading is my baby as she uses my hair as a rope swing.  I have  since sported the pony tail look almost every day.  I could say that I was trying to look athletic, but the previous paragraph explains why that look isn’t happening, either.

Finally, instead of eye shadow, I now wear the permanent under-eye shadow that comes from my children conspiring to keep me up all night.  I’m up every three hours to feed Chloe, and just for fun, Caleb and Hannah Grace like to say ‘hi’ during Chloe’s off hours.  I love all of my children, but I really wouldn’t mind if we didn’t meet at three a.m.

So, I might not look stunning for my 30th birthday.  In fact, I might look a little unattractive, but I have a good reason–three of them for that matter.  Maybe next August I’ll have a little more time and energy to devote to myself, (unless anyone wants to give me a gift certificate to a spa, now!) but for now, I’ll deal with looking my age.

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“Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;/but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised”

Proverbs 31:30

12 thoughts on “Approaching 30

  1. You are an amazing writer. I laughed several times during this blog b/c you know I can totally relate with three kids of my own and having just turned 30 as well. I love the part about your hair being used as a swing for Chloe. Hmm, maybe that is why I've been wearing my hair clipped up as well. I considered going short again but I, too wanted to have long hair again (maybe to try to regain some youth as well). Thank you for sharing your thoughts and regardless of what you think I see a beautiful person outside and mostly inside which in the end is what matters most!!

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    1. Thanks, Jenny! I figured most women would probably relate to this blog at some point in their lives. I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one who is having a tough time turning 30 this year! And your kind thoughts about me are exactly what I think about you!

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  2. Jennifer, Jennifer, Jennifer, oh my beautiful child, where dost thou get these thoughts?
    Hmmmm, let's see: since you were made in God's image and He created you, HIS
    MASTERPIECE, I think someone has been trying (and succeeded) to undermine your
    worth. Yes, I know, I am your mother and most moms think their offspring are incredibly
    beautiful, BUT, YOU ARE!!!!! Inside and outside. And, for what my words are worth, you really don't look a day over 25. You really are FUNNY! Love you

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    1. Mom, Mom, Mom, the fact that I can write about how I feel with humor should let you know I'm okay! I just wish I weren't turning 30 at the height of my feeling BLAH! Thanks for being my #1 fan!

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  3. Jennifer…think of all the great things you've done in your 30 years! All the places you've been, people you've met and your sweet babies…I feel exactly the same way about the looks…breastfeeding..belly whatever from babies so close together! Also…I have a gift card for you sitting on my kitchen counter…I'm going to try and get it in the mail this weekend…I really did want to help when you were having all the post-baby problems…I just didn't get to sending it…so now, you can have an excuse to shower and go to dinner with Matt!!! And about showering…do you get one everyday? I think I showered about 2 days ago…but to look at me it looks more like 5! 🙂

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    1. You're right–it has been a GREAT 30 years; I just don't LOOK great! 🙂 You were very sweet to get us a gift card; now you can just pretend it's my 30th birthday present! And yes, I have been showering, but it's only b/c I feel so gross already that I've made showering a priority over sleep. I shower at night after the kids are in bed and the chores are finished; hence, I am getting to bed very late. I do not wash my hair every day, though. Motherhood! 🙂

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  4. Totally with you girl! My luscious locks are falling out at a rapid speed (thank you post-preggo hormone withdrawal) and are being replaced by their hideous, evil, gray cousins. My belly…lets just say, Nora and I both have a "Buddha" belly, but nobody thinks mine is cute… And, really, mine looks like a deflated Buddha. The circles under my eyes…..there isn't a concealer in the world that could cover those…

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    1. Hi, Alisha,

      I think we just need to hang in there. I'm assuming we'll get to sleep a little more when they start school (until they're teenagers, of course!)!

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