Thirteen Going on Thirty.

(Fine. This post is 2 months behind. I am overwhelmed with so much right now -blogging about major life events SOON!- but I know I had to post this :)).

Why hello, I just turned 30. Waddup. 

I remember my very first job interview. I was asked the infamous question, the question that we all have been asked at one point in our lives. The question that makes us wanna close our eyes and imagine: 
‘How do you see yourself 10 years from now?’

Being the wanna-be-beauty-queen that I am (I know you’re laughing right now, Zena), I quickly organized my thoughts, weighed everything (insert spiderman slow mo here), and answered. I might have answered something about the job (of course I had to!), about staying on the job for a long time (so they won’t think I am a quitter). I remember saying something about my plans of getting promoted (so they would think of me as a keeper). 

And then I remember answering this:

“I see myself married, with a family of my own, probably with a kid already. I see myself as a mom.” 

I was 21 then. I just graduated from college and was waiting for the board exam results. I was determined. I knew what I wanted to do with my life.

Days before I turned 30, I was feeling a little low. Cranky low. That usual ‘what have I done with my life’ kind of low. You know how sometimes you compare your accomplishments with your friends’ accomplishments? How you look at their lives and think what would have happened if you did ‘this’ instead? I felt that. I thought about my plans and asked myself whatever happened to those plans. I looked at my career and looked at theirs and asked myself if this was what I really wanted to do with my life. 
I guess when you’re getting older you begin to ask yourself if you are already where you want to be. You know- where you really want to be. 

I met with my high school friends at a dear friend’s wedding and expressed my sentiment. They told me they felt that too, and then assured me that what I was going through was just a phase, that I am where God wanted me to be, and that accomplishments are something you cannot compare with anybody else’s.

I was still feeling low but was encouraged by the thought that I am not the only one feeling what I was feeling. I was happy, but there was still something in me that you know, wants to feel accomplished and all that jazz. 

And then I talked to a dear friend. It’s so amazing how God makes us talk to the right people at just the right time. This friend of mine experienced a miscarriage early this year. We talked about what happened to her and how she was coping. During her first trimester, she was the ‘feeling strong’ kind of woman. She felt that she can handle her job and still do good with it, and do good with the pregnancy. She was a career woman and still wanted to be on top of her career (late night reports, deadlines, etc.).  Her job was kind of demanding. And then she had the miscarriage. 

She told me how she realized that career is not everything, and then we talked about how the society puts pressure on women to be career-driven and independent and stuff. 

I was telling her about how I was feeling, about how I was questioning my accomplishments and then she told me this: 

“Mom ka kaya at 30. (You’re a mom at 30.) That’s a high end accomplishment for me.”

That’s it! That was all I needed to hear. That is my biggest achievement. I am a mom! 

Of course I am still a work in progress, but she is right. Career is never everything. While I was driven by what the heck I should do with my life and my career, I failed to think and remember that I have the best accomplishment so far: I gave birth to a son who is turning out sooooo fine, and that I am well, a mom! 
I would never trade what my biggest accomplishment is for anything. I am married to the love of my life and I have a son. Everyday I get to learn something new out of this experience. I am not yet an expert but I know I am handling mommyhood just fine. šŸ™‚ I wouldn’t trade the sleepless nights, breastfeeding sessions and all the running and talking baby talk for anything.

If I were given the chance to go back to the 21 year old me and go back to the interview, I would have answered the same: 

“I see myself married, with a family of my own, probably with a kid already. I see myself as a mom.” 

I AM A MOM. At thirty. That, for me, is definitely an achievement. That makes me feel very accomplished and proud. I may not be exactly where I planned myself to be but I know I am where God wants me to be. As the song goes, ‘God’s plans are never our plans. His ways are not our ways.’

I AM A MOM. At thirty. AND.I.LOVE.IT. šŸ™‚ 

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