There's nothing particularly milestone-like about a thirty-first birthday. It's just another in the string of no-longer-twenties. I have begun to see my age—in my hands, my skin in certain places, and in my face when I get tired or don't wear makeup. I find that strange, even though I shouldn't.
As a child, I don't think I ever thought about being over thirty. It seemed so old. I did think about being in my early twenties, and am now at least closer to what I'd planned for then. Which makes me one of the lucky ones from the girls in my generation.
Now the early twenties even seem young. Not extremely so, but still—at that age I thought of life as being mostly in front of me. At this age, I think of myself in the middle of life, with every day being precious.
The middle of life doesn't feel old exactly; rather, there's a staying consciousness of age and mortality that has only come to me, gradually, in the last few years. It still feels a little new and weird to me. But I can still layer on the eye-shadow and look in the mirror and see a girl's face. And as much as my habits and introversion may try to make an old soul out of me early, I plan to hang onto the childlike part of myself and anything else that might keep me from becoming a bitter old soul. We've all known those. I don't wish to be one.
My beloved husband has made a point out of making me feel loved today. He's going to take me to dinner and then I think we'll rent Ghost Town (I hear it's funny) and crash on the couch where we can be comfortable. I have a cold, so that sounds even more splendid than usual.