Posted by: Chelsea Novak | September 24, 2011

Of age and artificial deadlines

Today is my 35th birthday. In some ways that seems very young and old at the same time. I guess they weren’t kidding when they said that the 30s are the decade that really mess with your head. I actually believe that you’re only as old as you feel. This means that on any given day, I feel like I’m clocking in somewhere between 17 and 25. Maybe 27 when I’m at work :).

35. I don’t quite understand what that means. I’m in a new marketing demographic so I guess that’s something.

It is making me pause a little though. I realized last week that I put a lot of pressure on this age. I know that sometimes in life you need to make big choices and have a plan. I generally deferred those things to “after I turn 35,” category. Thinking that once I hit this magical age, I’d suddenly be “mature.” I’d be the serious person at the table who can express their thoughts without using the word “like”; Refer to myself as woman vs. girl; enjoy Margaret Atwood books; start being able to drink whiskey; watch the news; talk about investments with enthusiasm rather than wanting to shoot myself in the face; not be consistently mistaken for a 27-year-old (I know how I look has a lot to do with it, but how I act plays a big part as well).

But here I am at 35 and I have not attained any these magical powers of so called maturity. Maybe they’re not coming. Or even more importantly, maybe they’re not meant to come. I’ve just tried to be happy and avoid disaster with as much grace as I can muster. It seems to be working. Whether I’m 35 or 65, I think I’m always going to be living life the way that I do. These serious things I keep expecting to happen, I think they’d silence some of the best parts of me. And I don’t want that. I hope I always continue to laugh, dance, sing my way through each day. Maybe as I age, I’ll be less afraid to express myself and let more people in on the constant party that’s going on in my inner world.

I don’t know where I got the idea that getting old makes you serious. That the music stops because “real life” has begun. It can’t be true. I think you just get better at enjoying the song.



  1. Advice from a 44-year-old: stay away from the Margaret Atwood.


  2. Love it! And I’ve been a devout whiskey drinker for years and years, it has nothing to do with age, haha!

  3. I still call myself a girl, too. On my 35th birthday, I started dyeing my hair…purple. I also got my first tattoo this year! As for the demographic change, welcome to my box!

  4. I think life should never get serious! 🙂 Be more silly, get more happy. 🙂

    One of the funniest things I’ve discovered about ages is that when I get there, I’m still me!


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