I have so many ideas for writing today, my 35th birthday. I want to talk about how it feels to be a woman at 35, how much more comfortable I'm becoming with myself and perhaps, ironically, that is one of the reasons women my age and older no longer attract Donald Trump. Confident, comfortable-in-their-own-skin-women turn off misogynists. We're not interested in being defined by our sexuality. We refuse to use our looks as pawns to define our abilities, our potential or our value. We're in a process of becoming more and more ourselves and therefore, less likely to be interested in his opinion or anyone else's, for that matter. It's our own opinions we're coming in touch with, FINALLY.
I also want to say, I'm not done yet. Not at all. And while that sounds silly (I'm not exactly dying), I have this thing creeping into my psyche that's telling me I better hurry up. That my energy or my health or my vitality are on a timeline that will continue to accelerate and if there are things I want to do or be or live into, I'd better get a move on. A healthy dose of motivation is not a bad thing but most people who know me well know that I am intrinsically motivated and always have been. No one needs to tell me you only live once or to carpe diem. I feel that in my bones. The thing I'm wondering today is do these two realities (that in Hollywood/Trump land I'm officially not viable now that I'm 35 and the fact that I feel pressure to accomplish my goals sooner rather than later) come from the same place? Do all people feel the clock ticking on their dreams now or do women feel that way because our productivity has always come down to our body parts? So as my eggs get older (though I'm done procreating) and my sexuality becomes less in-your-face, I become done? Like, that's it for me.
I think the big number in my head is 40 and so these thoughts will undoubtedly continue soldiering towards me with increasing force in the next 5 years. In many ways I feel like I'm just emerging. I've been toying with many ideas of my personal potential and where I want to lean towards as my children get older. Do I want to go to grad school, write a book, expand my business or all 3? I don't know. But today, it feels as if I need to know sooner rather than later. And I'm wondering if my gender, if my sexual viability plays into that pressure. It's ridiculous, really, as none of my goals are remotely tied to my fertility or ability to attract someone of the opposite sex and yet, the clock seems to be ticking somewhere in the background whether I listen to it or not.
I feel as if my time is just beginning. Though the world might be likely to tell me I'm almost done because I'm a woman accelerating towards whatever age we define women as past their prime, I am just getting started. I have so many things I want to do. I have so many versions of myself I'm working to uncover, develop, expose. It's thrilling. It makes me hopeful for the future, as I become more and more confident, as I push myself towards personal discomfort to yield growth again and again. Yes, I am a woman. But regardless of the age categories I'll be lucky to find myself in over time, I will always be in a state of becoming. I just know that about me. We already know we never arrive. And maybe 35 year old me is saying, I don't want to.