When my friends started turning 30, there was this apprehension that maybe life is over now, that our chance to be cool was over and that life would necessarily be more boring. I can say that of my close friends who have passed this milestone birthday, none of them have gotten less cool, and most of them have started living even fuller lives, like having kids, launching new careers and finally being successful in the careers they've been investing in. Turning 30 isn't cool in a Seventeen Magazine kind of way, but I traded in my cool and popular card a long time ago. I'm looking forward to having the confidence of experience and moving on to the next stage of life.
But... did you know that Ben Haggerty just turned 30? Yes, the Same Love and Thrift Shop rapper, artist, activist and damn cool guy. He and I have had the same time on earth, and I have arguably done less to impact the world I live in then he has. I mean, this whole project (or initiative, as Ruth suggests I call it) is supposed to help me address that. But, with my birthday actually showing up, I'm starting to feel a little behind. I often feel a little behind. Because after my birthday, I'm going to have to clarify that it's not that I am raising money for my birthday, I'm raising money now that I am 30, which is somehow less compelling.
I am still hoping that I can use the general enthusiasm that people have for birthdays to make a little extra good in the world, y'know, for my birthday. I was thinking of hosting a trail work party, but since I know nothing about that and the Washington Trail Association needs about 2 months (and firm numbers) to put that together, we may have to go another route. At the moment, I am thinking of doing a 5K for cancer research, and possibly hosting a party (because, cake) and asking people to bring things that the shelter is looking for. But I'm not totally sure I can pull off hosting a party at the moment. And there is a chance I can do a work party at the HiveBio Lab, which would be a big help for a nascent non profit (and scores hours with a multi-person multiplier for the thermometer), although arguably not the same heart strings impact as feeding the hungry and curing cancer. Ack! So many decisions!
I hope when I do turn 30 I am no longer paralyzed by indecision or overwhelmed by simple planning and management tasks. And that maybe I can still be a little cool.
I took dinner to the shelter again tonight. I'm pretty pleased with how quickly this has turned from a massive source of anxiety to just another set of tasks. Having my mom and grandmother to help with the cooking was clearly the missing piece to a low-stress dinner for 15 thing.