I interrupt our regularly scheduled program to have a much needed chat about age. There seems to be this ridiculous notion surrounding age that implies that 30 is the end, and that all the things worth doing should and have to be done before 30. Where in the hell did this even come from? Why is it that people, especially us women, think that once we hit a certain age that life is suddenly over? This premise is beyond flawed. What is it about 30 that makes people think that life just suddenly comes to an end? Like somehow you are a modern day Cinderella and at the stroke of midnight your whole life turns into a pumpkin begins to decay and what remains of you just withers away over the remaining years. This is just another part of the outdated narrative of someone else’s view on life.
And ask yourself why the age 30?
It could just as easily be 35. Why not 40 or 45? How about 50? Why was this age chose and better yet, why does it seem to be set in proverbial stone?
Some say it’s the beauty industry. It’s true, the nonstop imagery and threat of wrinkles, crows feet, under eye bags, receding hairlines and thinning hair is more than enough to force us to open our wallets in hopes of preserving our youth and reversing the effects of age. This scare tactic is part of marketing. The earlier they can hook us, the longer they potentially have a customer. Well they are right about one thing, start a beauty care regimen sooner rather than later is great because like the medical field, an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure!
Others say it’s the medical industry. We hear things like have kids young in your 20’s because you’re high risk pregnancy after the age of 30…but is it really? The chances are, if you are high risk at 30 you were likely already high risk at 25 and will be at 35. That risk is more often associated with your overall health, medical and family history, wellness and lifestyle. Age is only ONE factor. It is one factor amongst many many other factors. It is correlation, not causation. There are and have been plenty of women over the age of 30 that have hand had children without complications, just as there are plenty of women under the age of 30 that have had complications.
And what countless other ages and false narratives that we blindly allow to dictate our lives? It’s time to let those go!
- You aren’t too old to go back to school
- You still have time to learn a new craft
- You do not need to own a house by a certain age or ever
- You don’t need to be married by a certain age
- You don’t have to have a baby by a certain age or a total of 2.5 kids for the perfect family
Other than driving age 16 – vroom vroom, legal age – Aye 18, and drinking age 21 – whoot whoot, everything else really is just a number with an adjustable timeline. And in reality, the only the weight and merit that these other ages have over us is what we allow it to control and dictate in our lives.I think Aalyiah said it best, “Age ain’t nothing but a number”. It can be a general guideline, but it is far from law. If you are going to affix a timeline or an age to a goal, milestone or destination in life then let it be because you chose to do so because it keeps you from procrastinating or it lights a fire under your ass to get shit done, and NOT because someone somewhere in drunkin history said it should be that way.
So where did this idea of “by this age” come from?
Honestly who knows. Although, it’s actually far more likely that most of these age notions are based off of outdated history and tradition. Times like the 1900’s, Renaissance England and other patriarchal societies (and even still today in some cultures) where women were mere dependents that had parents who wanted to marry them off to the highest, most worthy bidder and then married and bore children young.
Ladies, we are soooooooooooo far beyond this time and limiting beliefs to continue to bound ourselves to these ideas and allow them to dictate our lives.
Hell science and medicine and our pay grade is so much better now! Times have changed hunty! So quit letting strangers (and hell even people you know) dictate your life and where THEY THINK you should be in it. They have their own lives to live, ruin or flourish in. Let them focus on them and you do you. We’ll all be much happier that way.
Let’s not fear age or aging
With age comes growth, wisdom and a better capacity for handling life. I don’t know anyone that has regressed in intelligence and wisdom. As the years pass, we continue to learn and grow. So wouldn’t we want as much growth as possible in our corner backing us before jumping into a big life altering change like buying a house, having a baby, getting married, etc.? You often see posts on social media that say something like: What advice would you give to your 20-year old self? Or to another young lady or young man to help them?
I know that any of use, myself included, could come up with more than a handful of things to share with another person and about a billion things we would tell and warn our younger selves about to change the outcomes of past decision and situations. Now, if you can sit there and honestly say that there is nothing you would do differently, nothing you would tell yourself, then congratulations you are the exception. However if you’re like most people, you can think of at least three key things, pieces of advice or warnings you’d tell your younger self that would have drastically altered your life. And it is those very things that are the reason why making BIG life choices so early in life isn’t ideal and why we shouldn’t bound ourselves to age.
Doing things younger isn’t always the answer let alone the best answer. It is with age that we get experience and wisdom. Somethings are better when you’re older and we all truly need to take as much time as we individually require to grow, explore and figure ourselves out. Do you even know who you are and what YOU want in life? What can you really do with kids, a mortgage, a spouse when you haven’t finished learning, growing and figuring yourself out.