Birthday Card to 30s

A friend of mine turns 30 today. My elder kids are well into their own now, and my youngest is about to reach this mark. I remember my 30s, half a lifetime ago… From here, from now, they look quite different from how they did then. Here is my birthday card to everyone turning 30:

The 30s are a great decade, now I look back…

It’s a time of great energy, high hopes, ideals and notions that have grown more realistic after the 20s slapped the sillier ones out of you… And from here on, the balance of your life will be adulthood rather than childhood, as it has been up to now. It is a significant change in perspective, from which you will make different decisions and choices: those of an adult, more than those of a child. This can be a good thing.You will love like an adult, for one thing: this is love that is more giving than taking, and this will improve the quality of the love you offer, and the love that is offered to you.

You have learned and survived enough that you’ve got more of a handle on life, and know more what kind of standards you require of yourself and others, for happiness and smooth sailing. You know better how to cope with times when those standards aren’t met: how to forgive yourself and others for failures and flaws. As a parent of kids who all have made it to the 30s, that is a happy thing indeed!

Whatever comes between you and joy, between you and your best, happiest self, solve it now. Don’t wait. Don’t postpone. Don’t hope someone will save you. Get thee to a counselor if your habits of thinking and living don’t increase your delight in living.

Look at how you are creating yourself and your body, and start eating for how food works for you, or not, instead of just how it tastes. But drink for flavor instead of effect.

Learn how to give, and how to hold back from giving until you are asked.

These are all the first things that come to mind when I think of what I needed to hear when I turned 30. I might have laid a better foundation for my 40s, and further.

Love, 60s

PS: Strive more to be kind than to be clever.

Love, Nearly 70

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