So I know typically this blog is primarily law and a bit of work related travel and experiences thrown in. I also always promise to be honest on there and on social media, but I, like many others do have a private life, which I choose to keep relatively private.
However, I thought I would write a post as I turn 30 in April.
Aside from the fact it is likely I will be spending my 30th in lockdown (here is to all of us who have had 2 lockdown birthdays!), I am much more of a ‘I prefer other people’s birthdays’ kind of girl.
I am acutely aware though that the world we live in seems to expect certain things to occur by certain ages/stages in life. So here I am, highlighting that actually it’s okay to not have things when the social norm expects you to have them. That it is okay to have plans change throughout your life, and to not have the life you expected when you were little… it doesn’t mean they won’t happen, or that you have failed – you are just doing things in your own time and your own way.
When I was very little, if you had asked me where I would be turning 30, my answer was easy! Married, a couple of children, a barrister and hopefully teaching law students as well.
Realistically as my 30th birthday fast approaches, I don’t have any of those things. I do teach students, but not in the same way.
Would I be a liar if I said it didn’t bother me in the slightest? Absolutely! However, if the last year has taught me anything, it is that health and happiness are far more important.
I grew up valuing family and all that came with it, but never before has that been more important to me than the last year.
I have incredible people, family, opportunities in my life – and I wouldn’t change that.
I have also re-evaluated what I want with my life, how I achieve the things I set out to do, and yes, being a Barrister is still one of them. However, other things don’t sit so highly on the list anymore, or I have realised that I can do some of those things, without anyone else – or in a way that benefits someone else, giving some a home that needs one etc.
I also look back and realise that some of the setbacks I had, opened up incredible opportunities. I have been fortunate to work all over the world, something that would never have happened, had I gone to uni straight away and not worked and studied.
My little law blog that you are reading this on, is over 10 years old – and wow, this would never have been a thing either.
I have the most amazing group of people in my life, quality beats quantity every day of the week – and I am forever grateful that I get to do what I love, be a massive legal geek, drink copious amounts of hot chocolate, binge on crime dramas and documentaries and ultimately live a life where I am free to do those things and so much more.
So if you are approaching any big birthdays, or just struggling with the expectations and social norms attached to ages and where people should be – remember that they don’t mean anything!
You are always right where you need to be, with challenges and opportunities ahead of you and a bank of people willing you on and being your cheerleaders. Just know, that even when opportunities don’t go your way – it doesn’t mean a no forever, and take solace in the fact you were brave enough to try, and that means you can try again.