Is 30 really the new 20?

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My little family- November 2013. Courtesy of Emily Knight Photography

On Friday, I will turn 30. I’ve actually been debating telling people I’m 28, because I haven’t accepted yet that I’ll no longer be a “20s something.” I hear people talk about aging gracefully, but I’m not ready to age! I will not go quietly into the night!

At 20 years old I was tan, unmarried, and considerably thinner. The world was at my feet. Or that’s how I thought at the time with my youthful arrogance.

Now I’m a wife and mother, and I haven’t yet accepted this new identity. Heads don’t turn when I walk into a room. Men don’t “check me out” when I’m juggling my flailing shrieking toddler in one arm and digging for my keys with the other. Teeny boppers standing at the clothing racks next to me give me this disgusted look. I can read their minds: “You’re so OLD. You’re too OLD to shop here. Gross.”

I realize, of course, that it’s okay to be a mother and wife, and it’s okay to be 30. It’s wonderful and beautiful to be these things. I just haven’t wrapped my head around it yet! Most days I do, but not every day. Not when I’m facing the big 3-0 this week.

But I am learning to focus on new things, as I “find” myself. There’s a wonderful little community of moms here in the area that I’ve met, both from church and other Navy wives. They’ve been a real encouragement to me as we meet up for play dates, etc. And I try to be encouraging to them as well, if they need it.

With the help of an awesome friend and running buddy, I’m training for a half marathon in April. I’d like to do a full marathon after that. I ordered the Brazil Butt Lift Workout DVD program (don’t laugh!!!!!!) to tighten, well, everything. I’ve cracked down on not only how much I eat but what I eat. I try to make healthy, nutritious meals for my little family.

And wouldn’t you know as I’m typing this, an iCal Alert pops up on my laptop screen in front of my face. Just in case I forgot it was my birthday on Friday, IT’S MY BIRTHDAY. Happy birthday to me!

I may not have the body I did 10 years ago, but I can take good care of the one I have now. I try to dress the one I have now in clothes that flatter my shape and age. And I finally went to see a doctor about my adult acne. Now that I’m not pregnant or breastfeeding, I can take medication for it. I’ve also started using StriVectin-SD cream on my forehead wrinkles.

StriVectin-SD was created as a stretch mark cream, but somewhere along the way, it was discovered that it helps with wrinkles. It works too! I’ve used it in the past and noticed results after a month, but stopped when it made me break out a little on my forehead. Now that I’m taking the acne medication, I thought I might as well start using StriVectin-SD again. I’m taking some before pictures, and then I’ll take some at 30 days, so I can show you the results!

My mom wasn’t using her tube of StriVectin, so when I was there for Thanksgiving, I totally stole it. =D (Okay, I told her I was doing it, so not really stealing.)

When I used StriVectin in the past, there was only one or two kinds available. Now the brand has numerous products. With a coupon, you can purchase a StriVectin Gift of Discovery 3-piece kit at for $35.95.

When your purchase from, you can get points back on your purchase (BE Perks). Besides shopping rewards, they give out free samples and have free shipping in the domestic US for orders $60 or more. So it’s a pretty cool site! They sell all kinds of products, including sunblock (very important for any age!), fragrances for women, flat irons, makeup, and bath accessories. They even have the Batiste brand of dry shampoos- my favorite!

I believe it’s important to take yourself, inside and out, no matter your age. For me that includes attending church services, learning more about God and fellowshipping with others, and doing my personal devotions and praying regularly. It means exercising and eating a mostly whole foods diet (except for flavored coffee creamer…that’s my one vice…I love the stuff, even if it’s not even real cream!). Staying positive and keeping busy is also a part of it, especially since my husband lives away from us right now (out of state Navy training). And for me it also means regularly putting on makeup and styling my hair, even if I don’t feel like it!

I don’t know. Maybe I’ll wake up Friday morning and realize that nothing has really changed…and then I’ll be okay. 🙂

Have you ever faced a mini “identity crisis” or a birthday you weren’t thrilled about?
Note: I did receive compensation for this post. However, the opinions expressed above (and there are many of them) are my own. They may differ from your opinions or the opinions of others.

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  1. I had a much harder time with 25 than with 30. Now that I am closer to 40, I appreciate that age IS just a number. I’m happier with the skin I’m in, what I am doing, and the legacy that I will leave behind. I suppose it is true, you do get wiser with age!

    Have a very happy birthday and welcome to the 30 club!

  2. I’m approaching the big 5 – 0! 30 seems so long ago and quite a few pounds ago! You’re not there yet, but one day you’ll realize that your experience and wisdom are worth the aging process. While I loved a lot of things in my 30’s, I’m enjoying myself so much more now!

    Happy Birthday!!!! You’re as young as you feel in your heart! (And you’ve got a beautiful family)

  3. I love you Elisabet! I think, with no beauty cream, makeup, no age mentioned… are just such a beautiful person! Not only have you aged gracefully, but you also go through life and adjust just as much! From becoming a mom, wife, blogger and so much more…you have just welcomed every transformation with such ease and grace! I love reading your blogs, and even guest writing some of them, but more so, I love knowing and having you as a friend! And I think you look amazing for turning 30!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. 31 hit me hard. I don’t know why that was worse than 30 but it was. I think you look awesome and don’t know how much “considerably” thinner you could have been! Happy birthday!

  5. You know I find that being in my 30’s has freed me from all the ridicule and self doubt we put on ourselves in our 20’s. In our 20’s we think everyone is judging us. In our 30’s we realize no one cares. I have embraced 30 and while I don’t look like a super model I have some things I didn’t have when I was twenty something. Security in a marriage with someone who loves me for me, two awesome kids, a home, equity, a college degree and some more self esteem. 🙂 Embrace it girl! 🙂

  6. I remember turning 30 and it really isn’t as bad as it seems. I am 36 and inching my way towards 40. What I would give to have the body I had as a teen. However, I wouldn’t have my three beautiful children that were worth every pound gained, every stretch mark, and probably grey hair sooner than I would like. 🙂

  7. I don’t know. I’m kinda looking forward to my 30s. My kids will be so much more independent by then. But maybe I’m just in denial. Happy Birthday! May it be your best decade yet!

  8. Thanks, everyone for the encouragement! It’s nice to know there are so many awesome ladies in their 30s and beyond. It means I can still be cool even though I’m getting older, hahah!

  9. Like you, I wasn’t crazy about turning 30, but I must say that my 30’s have been awesome! I’ve gotten to travel to cool places like Alaska and Hawaii, I quit my job to start my own business, and even appeared in an infomercial. I will be turning 40 on December 31st, but I have decided that I’m still going to tell people that I’m 32. 😉 Cheers to our best years being ahead of us both!

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