What I Know for Sure at Age 35

by jenifer daniels

Throughout life, we are posed with questions to answer. What do you want to be when you grow up? What college do you want to attend? Will you marry me? Would you like fries with that? Some perplexing; some absurd; some seemingly unanswerable. (Seriously, how long has it taken you to decide if you do, in fact, want fries with that?) But one of the most poignant questions that life (or Gene Siskel) asks of you is ‘what do you know for sure?’

As a young woman, I answered these questions on what I thought I believed to be true. But as you know when you are young, your worldview is narrow. You think you know, but you really don’t.

Now ‘fully grown’, married with children, and approaching 35, I decided to spend some time reflecting on ‘what i know for sure’. Here is what I came up with:

what self help books won’t tell you
  • never take advice from someone who can’t afford to give it 
  • get your sh*t together. no one will do it for you. 
  • no one likes a whiner. 
  • never present someone with a problem, give them the solution. 
  • if you think you are good, prove it. 
  • you are a superhero - claim your superhero name! 

on sharing this space on Earth
  • life is best lived by the makers, not the takers. 
  • prayer is talking to God, meditation is listening to God. 
  • to thine ownself be true. 
  • tattoos hurt but not being yourself hurts more. if you want one, get one. 
  • not voting makes you a quitter. 
  • you are voice in this world, you deserve to be heard. 
  • you’ll only appreciate it when you don’t have it. 
  • “shade” is healthy. it means you’re a skeptic. 

on being a woman
  • wear flats. stop trying to be cute, instead, be comfortable. 
  • paint your nails, get a massage, arch your brows. but never wax your mustache. 
  • splurge on makeup, it’s worth it. 
  • always wear a bra from age 12-19. trust me. 

on living the good life
  • 4 words: godiva dark chocolate cheesecake. 
  • purchase art. display it. stare at it. 

on education
  • should you go to college, it will absolutely matter which one you go to. choose wisely. 
  • go to college and study what you love for a fee. teach yourself technical skills for free (via the library or online courses). 
  • give a speech in public. it will humble you. 

on marriage
  • spend your life with the one you can’t live without, not the one you can live with. 
  • your spouse is your best friend. tell them everything. 

on motherhood
  • this is life’s biggest test. don’t f*ck it up. 
  • you’re a coach, quarterback, cheerleader, and opposing team all in one. play the right role at the right time. 
  • trust your children enough to be honest with them. they know more than you think. be honest. 

My list isn't meant to be exhaustive but I do consider it to be my truth. So what’s your truth? What do you know for sure?

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