There’s something absolutely terrifying about entering a new decade of life. Turning twenty was full of excitement and possibilities. Turning thirty has me wondering why life didn’t fall into place as I thought it should.

Today is my birthday. I’ve had mixed emotions about it for the past 6 months. One is excitement, since I am currently getting on a plane to San Francisco for the weekend, meeting up with friends I met through the BBG exercise program while I’m there, and traveling a city that has been on my bucket list for years with the BF. The other emotions? Negative ones.

I’m a planner, to the point of it almost being OCD. I could tell you right now exactly what I am doing on any said day within the next three months. It gives me control, and I like to know how my life will go. That said, it should be no surprise that I had it all lined up in my head since I was about 16 how my life would go: graduate high school, go to university, meet the love of my life, graduate university with a 4 year bachelor degree, get married, buy a house, begin a career, have a baby or two, and have my career begin taking off. All by the time I turned thirty. Well. I’ve done some of those things.

I finished high school, that was probably the only thing that went completely to plan.

It took me six years to finish university. I did poorly the first year, and switched to the college to complete a 2+2 degree (2 year diploma, which then directly allows you to begin your third year of your bachelor degree). The grades from the first year affected that and I couldn’t move directly into third year. I switched majors twice. I had to retake a couple of classes. I moved to Calgary to work full-time and couldn’t take a full 5 course semester for a year. I ultimately finished and crossed the stage.

I took a break for three years before I decided to pursue my accounting designation, which was another two years plus 8 months because I had to take classes I didn’t take in university. So what could have taken 6 years total took almost 9. I just finished the designation last year.

I met a few men who I was certain were the “loves of my life” which couldn’t have been further from the truth. We can just say I’ve had my share of poor relationship experiences, from cheaters, to drug abusers, to manipulative, emotional/mental abusers.

I’ve moved nine times in the past 10 years and lived in four different cities. I do not own a house. I am not married. I do not have children. My career is at the very beginning stages of where I want it to be.

I’ve been really struggling with all this. It’s too early to be having a midlife crisis, but when plans don’t go the way I think they should, I have a hard time with it.

I made mistakes, and I made poor choices. I’m human, it happens.

All of those missteps have formed me into who I am today. I had to really stop myself from focusing on all of these negatives. It’s so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle that is being an adult that when all you see is tasks, and to do lists, and cleaning, you forget about what’s important. About what has been achieved.

I am an accountant at a stable oil  & gas company, who has not laid a single person off since the downturn in oil. I really have met the love of my life, and we’ve been together for almost five years. We rent because we love the area we live in, and to buy in this economy is not feasible. We have a healthy, loving, and supportive relationship.

I get to travel, spend time with family and friends, exercise, go out, and my career is slowly starting. I am healthy, I have amazing friends, and I get to experience new things constantly.

I am turning thirty the strongest, healthiest, and fittest I have ever been. I am confident in who I am as a woman. So even though I haven’t checked all those boxes, I am happy, and it took me too long to realize that.

This next decade is about being just that. Happy.

This is achievable in so many ways. I will grow myself and my relationships. I am going to start a new exercise program next week with weights, and continue running. I want to challenge my body, and push it to new limits. I want to run a half marathon. I want to continue to be active in the BBG community, where I’ve met so many amazing women and made so many new friends, even though I will be taking a break from the exercise program for a bit. I will continue to work on my career so I can continue to advance. I’ll get that house one of these days, but it isn’t something I need to dwell on. I will travel more, and worry less about money.

It’s time to experience life to all its potential, and I can’t wait.