Monday, August 19, 2013

My milestone.

Those of you who know me on any given level, know that a recently celebrated decade in my life was met with much trepidation and woe. Something about the feeling of not having done something with my life, I'm just a receptionist, and blah blah blah. Truth be told I was a bit melodramatic about the whole event (don't tell my husband that I've finally agreed with him on this).I would like to think that it was simply the stress of finding a very pronounced vein on my leg coupled with the foreign greeting of "mam" whilst at the grocery store. Yes, I would like to propose that these 2 incidents are the scapegoats that catapulted me into a "doom-thirty oblivion" and not my own illogical thinking.

Now in my defense there are some legitimate things that turning 30 allowed me to come to grips with. Because of that, I am still continuing to grow and change and I'm so thankful that the Lord is not done with me yet. However, I would also just like to take a moment to acknowledge a few immediate changes that this new chapter in my life has cultivated and to brag "celebrate" them in their full glory.

One of those significant monuments is that I am no longer the losing party at a little game I like to call "The Thrifty Chicken". This name may not sound familiar to you but if you are a shopper on any level, particularly in thrift stores, you will find that you have participated on some level. The Thrifty Chicken is that battle of the wills when two unrelated parties begin browsing through a section of affordable, vintage clothes at separate ends of the clothes rack. Inevitably, if the deals are right and the selection is top notch, it will catapult these two individuals into a match of stamina. As each party gets closer and closer to the middle, one or the other will digress the rest of the rack to the stronger party and go on browsing another section as if it never happened. This game would always get the best of me. Seasoned shoppers typically knew weakness when they saw it and I was easy an easy target to spot with my timid demeanor and sweat beaded brow. The mere presence of another person in the same vicinity would send me packing to the 90's outerwear section where I'd be forced to browse jeweled vests and purple courdoroys.

That is until recently.

I never even knew that this Spartan change even took place until I was out at our local thrift store. I had found myself in the usual garb, perusing over a colorful array of sweaters. (A weakness I have that doesn't help combat the librarian complex my wardrobe screams). There I was in the middle of this lovely assortment when an over-eager twenty-something on my right started whisking through hangers at the other end quicker than you could say "cashmere on sale". Maybe it was the extra shot of caffeine in my latte that morning but some kind of strength welled up inside of me and I knew it was on. I was tired of always being the one to bow out. Tired of watching perfectly good outfits walk out the door in another girls hands simply because I was a polyester pansy. I buckled down. In my mind I could see the metaphoric tumbleweed roll across the linoleum store floor and onlookers saunter out of swinging saloon doors.

As our fingers flew over discounted wool and we came closer and closer to the center of the row I grabbed a price tag and appeared to study it intently just a hands reach away from the middle sweater in order to show my opponent that I had found my ground and I was sticking to it. I studied that little blue tag like it was written in hyroglyphics and I was the world's greatest archeologist. This was it. My moment of truth. Eternity seemed to pass. I felt her inch closer and closer to my clearly marked zone of much so that the pressure mounted to the point of complete awkwardness. But just as I was about to revert to my old ways and slip back into the cowardly darkness... it happened. She walked away! She left the scene with a sigh and what I could swear was a whispered "I"ll get you next time".

Day made. And I found a pretty great cable-knit to celebrate the momentous occasion.

When I relayed this huge accomplishment to my husband later that same night, he was not so much on the same level of glory as I was. I'm pretty sure if I could have gotten a congratulatory pin or some kind of plaque or certificate I would have displayed it proudly. And to his credit, I can see why this particular "win" in life wouldn't seem like so much of a big deal.

But, as I told my husband in the kitchen through winning sips of the best tasting giner gale I have ever had, I told him that while it may be a silly little game, it is about a little thing we all like to call principle.
It was a small, small moment that I got to see what it feels like to stand my ground.

And while I realize and completely agree that I don't always want to be the type of person that is stubborn in the face of conflict, insensitive and unwilling to yield, I couldn't help but think that maybe another year under my belt isn't so bad. Especially if it comes with a fortified backbone and a little boost in something called a voice.

So there you have it. One of my milestones.
Thrifty Chicken no more.
Just thrifty.

Oh yes, and don't forget the other noteworthy three-decade accomplishments which include in no particular order:

Hardboiling an egg.
Keeping more than 4 plants alive simultaneously.
Owning a set of "guest towels".
Turning off lights as I leave a room to conserve on energy.

Ok no that's false. That last one will take at least another ten years.