16 July, 2016

looming on the horizon…3-0…

The big 3-0 is looming on the horizon…

Yes. I weaved the word loom intentionally into that sentence.

And yes. I weaved the word ‘weaved’ into the above sentence as well.

Anyways, my 30th birthday is looming on the horizon.

In less than a week – my twenties will over. finished. complete. goneski.

Usually in the week leading up to my birthday I get nostalgic and have started limbering up for my annual ‘birthday splits’ (see here). I am secretly excited to do the splits this year…I feel like from here on in…it is only get harder.

Last year, I wrote a list of the things I achieved in my twenties. Ranging from eating over 20kg of houmous to travelling the world (see here).

I know this all may seem a little self-involved and I am pretty sure you don’t really care THAT much about my self development. However, I think it is important to ‘check in’ every so often. We get so caught up in ‘liking’ photos and streaming movies that we don’t actually sit down and allocate time to think about how we are evolving and shifting with time.

Last week a photo popped up on my Facebook asking me to ‘share this memory’ – see below. I look like a baby. I haven’t grown into my face (or should I say teeth yet…although I doubt that will ever happen). It made me think about ‘ageing’ – everyday I see myself in the mirror and I still feel that I look exactly the same as I did when I was 20…but the evidence is quite clear – I have definitely aged…it is strange how these changes just happen. Ever so slightly. Without us really noticing. I guess that is the beauty of photos – they really do create a means of age comparison. A moment in time, in which the past can be held against the present.

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I am so very grateful for my twenties. They were full of colour, laughter and alcohol. A decade of transition. I can honestly say I feel comfortable with who I am today. I have learnt to love my HUGE hair and my even BIGGER teeth. I am learning to love my pet (fat deposit) snake that hibernates around my waist ALL year round (I have learnt to accept this pet snake as my ‘frenemy’ for life).

As I reflect on my 20’s, I have realised that I learnt one key thing every year. I decided to write them down. Again, a warning – this might seem highly self-involved…but here goes:

TWENTY– This is going to sound very arrogant – but this was the year, that I realised I was decent looking. During school, I always immediately ‘friend zoned’ by the opposite sex – I was the awkward indian girl. But something changed when I turned 20 – in my second year of university, I started to get a little bit of male attention and attempted to ‘flirt’ … the rest if history…

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(yes, i am heavily intoxicated in the above picture…yes, this was a ‘selfie’ before selfies were ‘cool’ – it was taken with a disposable kodak camera)

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(the time i dressed up like a trashy girl guide…selling ‘hash cookies’ – wtf)

TWENTY-ONE –Boston University & travelling around Central American & Europe – I learnt that there is a BIG wide world outside the Sydney bubble. It was a significant year – I drank out of red cups and learnt what it was like to be outside of my comfort zone.

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TWENTY-TWO– Friendships are not always forever. After being away for a year, I learnt that friendships change – and that is ok. It was in this year and the years following, that I made friends which I believe will be in my life forever.

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TWENTY-THREE – Finished my degree and entered the corporate workforce. I learnt what it was like to work full-time in a corporate environment. I remember the feeling of responsibility and routine. I tried pretty hard to fit in, but deep down…I knew business suits and pivot tables were never going to be for ‘me’

TWENTY-FOUR – A family trip to India was the catalyst to completely embracing my Indian culture (something which I had previously tried to hide – I hated that I could never buy fake tan like my friends or that blue hair mascara never showed up on my thick black mane). I remember falling in love with the colour and vibrancy. I had just purchased a digital camera and couldn’t get enough of india’s cultural richness.

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TWENTY-FIVE – Yes, I did suffer a ¼ life crisis – I quit my corporate job and followed my passion of design. I learnt that you need to hussle in this world to get what you want – it ain’t gonna come to you.

TWENTY-SIX – My first heartbreak – I learnt that life and love doesn’t always go as planned. And healing heartbreak is not linear – there is no time limit. Love can be messy and tricky. I also learnt family is your constant. It was this year that I began to really enjoy the company of my family…suddenly I wasn’t ‘too cool’ for the Sheth Shack.

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TWENTY-SEVEN – I began weaving…I still believe weaving ‘found me’. It fell into my lap when I needed it most. I learnt that finding your creative passion is an unstoppable force. All I wanted to do was weave – night and day. This was also the year that mum threatened to put me on ‘shaadi.com’ (an indian matrimony site)…she was scared I was going to become a weaving spinster.

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TWENTY-EIGHT –My year of dating. I went on hundreds of dates. Tinder. Speed dating. Fit 2 Date (yes.. a singles bootcamp – it was creepy). Blind dates. Dates set up by mum. And the list goes on. It was the year that I learnt an important lesson – it is better to be weird than fake. I would find my ‘one’…but not by changing who I was. It is also better to be ALONE than with a moron.

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TWENTY-NINE – Things happen when you least expect it. This was the year I met the love of my life. I met him at a time when I was very comfortable and happy with myself. I still believe that the universe brought us together in my final year of my twenties – because I was finally ready and had undergone the right experiences to create a beautiful partnership.

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Other random things I learnt over my twenties: never try and wax your own upper lip (you will end up with a hitler-like scab), always put your car in PARK (otherwise it will reverse down the street and hit your neighbours car), a front-fringe does not suit everyone, hommous is the best invention, brussel sprouts are actually delicious and so is coffee and Beyonce is the way to the light (bow down) – I will never be too old for Queen Bey.

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Oh..and mum is always right.

So there you have it, a rough summary of just some of the things I learnt in my twenties.

I plan to do this self-reflective exercise when I hit 40. And then 50. And so on. I guess that is life – we keep just keep learning…about the world and ourselves.

I still don’t have everything figured out. I don’t think I ever will. I don’t have as many friends as I did when I was 20 – but the ones I do have make me so happy. I don’t have the stamina to party for 3 nights in a row. Oh and I still don’t know how to drive a manual or change a tyre. But atleast I am enjoying the ride!!!

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nikita (aka nixilicious, N-Unit, brown sugar….i also learnt self-titled nicknames rarely catch on!)

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