Turning 36

Vera insisted on a table cloth, party cups and streamers. She's very into parties these days and wants to decorate for one at least once a day.

Vera insisted on a table cloth, party cups and streamers. She's very into parties these days and wants to decorate for one at least once a day.

Last week I turned 36. My 35th was a milestone but it was clouded. I was distracted by the transition of moving to Texas and missing my friends and also by the excitement and nervousness of being newly pregnant. So turning 36 brought up many thoughts that probably would have otherwise hit me last year.

At first I muddled through some negative emotions and self-doubt. I analyzed my many wrinkles that seem to be growing deeper by the second. I struggled with loving my body after two kids. I allowed myself to feel these feelings and to think these thoughts but after I processed them, I simply moved on. Life is far too short. I celebrated with my husband and family over a great meal and a piece of pie. I felt loved and grateful for this stage in life and these new adventures

Since I’ve always found encouragement, laughter and a sense of calm from reading, I decided to compile some meaninful quotes from a couple of my favorite books and authors that I've read throughout the past few years. I also included two from close friends and mentors. Below are a few that have meant the most to me:

That is the motto women should constantly repeat over and over again. Good for her! Not for me.
— Amy Poehler, Yes, Please
Sometimes you just have to put on lip gloss and pretend to be psyched
— Mindy Kaling, Why Not Me?
...the three things I cannot change are the past, the truth, and you.
— Anne Lamott, Help, Thanks, Wow: The Three Essential Prayers
Culturally we cherish a pregnant woman...We say “Congratulations” when we see a pregnant woman, but there is usually an element of scandal associated with it. Pregnant women are either too young or too old, or it’s too soon after another pregnancy, or she’s going to get in trouble at work. She’s too poor, too rich, too successful, too skinny, too fat, too crazy, too busy, too single, too married, too too.”
— Jim Gaffigan, Dad is Fat
I want to be in the arena. I want to be brave with my life. And when we make the choice to dare greatly, we sign up to get our asses kicked. We can choose courage or we can choose comfort, but we can’t have both. Not at the same time. Vulnerability is not winning or losing; it’s having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome. Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage.
— Brene Brown, Rising Strong
THERE ARE NO MISTAKES, only opportunities.
— Tina Fey, Bossypants
I think perfectionism is based on the obsessive belief that if you run carefully enough, hitting each stepping-stone just right, you won’t have to die. The truth is that you will die anyway and that a lot of people who aren’t even looking at their feet are going to do a whole lot better than you, and have a lot more fun while they’re doing it.
— Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird
Motherhood sure has a way of knocking you on your ass and helping you realize that you aren’t in control.
— A dear friend and mentor
Sometimes you leave your house without underwear or your wedding ring but you show up anyway.
— A close friend and working mom
Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to talk about later on. Reading is the unbelievably healthy way my attention deficit disorder medicates itself. Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape; it’s a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up, and it’s a way of making contact with someone else’s imagination after a day that’s all too real. Reading is grist. Reading is bliss.
— Nora Ephron, I Feel Bad About My Neck: and Other Thoughts on Being a Woman
The only way we will survive is by being kind. The only way we can get by in this world is through the help we receive from others. No one can do it alone, no matter how great the machines are.
— Amy Poehler, Yes, Please

And finally the quote I repeat to myself over and over in every new stage of life (if you haven’t read it withinin context then stop what you are doing and go read the entire story now):

“Do your thing and don’t care if they like it.”
— Tina Fey, Bossypants