I turned 30 back in November. I didn’t blog about it.

I had planned to write about it, similar to what I did for my 29th birthday, describing the changes of the previous year, both in my circumstances, and my emotional state. If there is one thing I am truly proud of myself for, it’s the growth I have gone through in 2008. I have become such an astoundingly different person I hardly recognize myself. I’ve had to face a lot of hard truths in the last year, about my life, my marriage, myself. There was so much I wanted to share about turning 30, and I nearly did.

What stopped me was a gift. The most incredible, amazing gift. For my 30th birthday, someone very special gave me a round trip ticket to Ireland.

It seemed so crazy at first. I’m going through a divorce. My ex is fighting me for custody. I’m terrified of flying. I’ve only traveled out of the country once in my life, and that was to a resort in Cancun, which is just the McDonald’s version of Mexico. Did I mention I’m terrified of flying??

Yet for all the reasons why I shouldn’t go, there were just as many why I should. The week in question, my kids were going to be in Orlando with my ex for the annual week-long vacation to Disney. They wouldn’t be sitting home pining for my return, and suddenly sitting home alone myself that week seemed a bit silly. I kept telling myself it would look bad to take off out of the country for a week, but why? I’ve already admitted things under oath that I have done, and been accused of others I haven’t, and at the end of the day this wouldn’t bring anything new into the proceedings. The only thing that could stop me was my own fear. I could jump on this opportunity, or I could let worry and concern over what others might think continue to rule my life.

In the end I made my choice, and it was the best decision I have ever made.

     

I could tell you what it was like to immerse myself in another culture. I could tell you about the people I met, the things I did, and the relationships formed that will be a huge influence in my life over the coming years.

I promise one day I will.

For now I’ll say this- I have been born, I have grown up, and I have given birth three times over, but it took turning 30 before I finally learned to live.