Fikayo couldn’t believe her friends were going on and on about thirty like it was a plague. She had just turned thirty and she felt fabulous. In her opinion, thirty was the new twenty. She checked out her outfit in the mirror and smiled. She had a great figure, extra pounds aside and she had a date with a man who tickled her brain intellectually. He was hot, accomplished and suave and they were in no mood to hurry things. Tonight they were going to have a long conversation over a very expensive bottle of wine at a luxurious wine bar and giggle like high-schoolers and then her date was going to walk her to her car, kiss her goodnight and watch as she sped on home. She didn’t care that he might want something more from her; she didn’t stop to think for a second that he could be husband material. No she was long past the phase where every man who as much as walked past her was a potential mate.
She picked up the bottle of her signature scent and smiled. What wasn’t there to love about turning thirty? The new decade had brought with it an appreciation of the finer things in life. She had spent her twenties hustling, working long hours for horrible bosses and getting pay that wasn’t nearly enough. Now she was a small madam at the office, having paid her dues and could go and come as she pleased with all the perks. In her twenties she had focused on meeting the right men and keeping track of myriads of friends but now she realized that quality trumped quantity every time. She had only a select few that she called friends and they valued her just as much as she valued them and now she saw that husband aside; there was no person as important as the family God had given her. She saw her parents become her friends and looked forward to evenings spent with them. Her mother’s concern for her single status was born out of love and a longing for grandchildren but the woman always calmed down when she held her in her arms and said “Mother, He makes all things beautiful in His time”.
And the men…in her twenties she had learnt lessons for a lifetime- From books, from others and the unforgettable personal experiences. She remembered Thomas, the guy who had stolen her heart at 27, their love had been beautiful but alas, it had not stood the test of time. Thomas had wanted a child before wedlock and she had refused to oblige despite the pleas of he and his parents. She hadn’t wanted to be married for the wrong reasons and Thomas had mournfully exited her life. She remembered how long it took the hole in her heart to fill up, she had asked God why so many times but the thing is life really was funny. Now she wouldn’t even consider marrying Thomas. He was perfect for Fikayo at 27 but absolutely wrong for Fikayo at 30. She shuddered to think about what would have happened if she had married him at 27. Would they have drifted apart as she evolved or would she have failed to evolve into this beautiful, self-assured person who knew exactly what her purpose was on this earth because her wings had been cut in the name of marriage? She felt a certain sadness for women who had felt pressured into marrying before 30, they would never understand this. Now the men who came into her life realized soon that she was not to be put in the box labeled ‘Thirty and searching’. They stayed because they were intrigued by her, because they enjoyed her company and were wowed by her blatant unawareness of the social expectations of this modern age. She only spent her evenings with people who added value to her; memorable conversations, shared laughs and exciting adventures. She no longer had to endure a boring conversation because ‘he may be the one’ or put up with his conceit and vain talk because ‘he was considered husband material’. She had done all of that in her twenties and look how that turned out.
She chuckled to herself as her phone buzzed. It was time for her date and she felt so serene. She said a prayer by her bed before slipping on her shoes and she picked up her car keys she thought of God, the one person who had been with her every step of the way-Through the heart aches, the fun times and the uncertainties. He was really the one who boosted her confidence because a long time ago when she was in a dark place he had said unto her “I know the thoughts I have towards you, thoughts of good and not evil, to bring you to an expected end…” She knew that that expected end would be fabulous. She didn’t care about the journey anymore, if she was going to be married then she was going to be married to the very best man there was for her. She wasn’t gonna settle because she was the daughter of a king. Tonight she would focus on the pleasures of dating after thirty. She turned on the radio and sang loudly as she drove into the sunset…I gotta feeling, that tonight’s gonna be a good night…
…to be continued