By Naila Sheikh – Houston, Texas
For the longest time, I dreaded this number, let alone write an entire article about it. Since the days to my thirtieth birthday are nearing, and I find myself meticulously judging every pore on my skin, I realize that the present is a passing of time that happens to be thirty years! And it also happens to be a number that I am trying to get comfortable with; a new decade, a new me OR just a number and the old me…?
Even though vanity is every woman’s sacred treasure, I suppose my conflict with this number is nothing but the ‘notion’ of turning thirty. One cannot help but evaluate the passing decade with serious measurements; “I did make a career, I did marry, I did have a child, I did make friends for lifetime, I did travel, I cried, I laughed, I loved, I missed and of course…I grew.”
Growing is what our twenties are all about. We grow to be either independent or dependent, confident or insecure. And life’s challenges can either make us weaker or stronger. In every difficulty of my life, I have chosen the latter. Perhaps it is my faith in God, but tragedies have found a new meaning for me. I deal with them with patience, and the loss is sometimes unbearable, but it is surely made up for by the wonderful people in my life. I am surrounded with like-minded, intelligent and good hearted souls that have become a part of my everyday life. My mom and my siblings mean the world to me. Especially my mother. She is the rock behind my ‘rockstar’ existence, and she is always encouraging me to become better. Her sacrifices and lovable upbringing are a reflection of my personality, and I am always inclined to carry myself with poise and grace.
I am sure my growth will still continue over the age of thirty and for that, ‘time’ has taught me to become extremely grateful, filling the last ten years of my life with much bliss and happiness. Marrying the man who supports me and adores me for the way I am, who is intelligent, simple yet hardworking and believes in the ‘extraordinary’ – with whom I haven’t lost my identity but in fact have blossomed into the woman I imagined ten years ago. The biggest and most precious happiness of my life is my beautiful daughter Mehreen who is only 20 months old, yet her exuberance and enthusiasm for life makes my heart fill with so much joy and love! She has made our lives much more meaningful and wonderful. Motherhood is a blessing that is indescribable in words – my heart feels bigger and my love feels infinite. As for the number 30? I say, bring it on!
Finally, I’d like to conclude this post as your soon-to-be “senior” correspondent to Brown Girl Magazine, by giving my most sincerest advice to all the 20 + girls who are on the same journey as I was and strive to make their dreams come true; visualize your life the way you exactly want it to be and have faith in yourself. You are your best self when you believe in possibilities and work hard towards it. Your destiny, your security, and your life’s core foundation merely lies in your mindset and perception. Seek it and conquer it. The rest will follow.
To my mother,
I love you.