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The International Writers Magazine
: Turning 30 - Making Lifestyle Changes

Turning 30
Alaina Alexander

Last April became the witching hour for me so to speak. I turned 29 and suddenly the world seemed a little colder. Maybe, it’s because I have spent the past five years hopelessly underemployed or it could be the fact that I don’t have a husband and/or kidlets running around. Heck, I don’t even have any romantic prospects at this time. Which would probably slip my mind if it weren’t for my family’s constant reminders.

A week after my 29th birthday I sat down and wrote out a retrospective of my 20’s. My retrospective turned into a long and convoluted story with twists and turns that would rival any TV movie of the week.
My early 20’s were spent scraping by in college and wishing for a job with a decent salary, benefits and status. My mid-twenties were spent in a succession of temp jobs, brief gigs and a disastrous foray into the corporate world. At the time, a majority of my other friends and former college classmates were in the same situation as I. We were all happy just to have a job in our field after college. It didn’t matter we had to scrape up change to buy basic necessities or that all of dinner parties were actually pasta and salad potlucks. At the time, I was still buying cool vintage dresses from thrift stores and wearing stocking caps with wild abandonment. Going to the bars, meant staying out until closing time and then continuing the after-bar at someone’s house. The next day, I was at work at 7:45 am sharp. No one had a clue that I was coasting on three hours of sleep.

Then the late twenties hit and my friends had ceased their post-college drift and had begun settling down into their careers, getting married and buying houses. Meanwhile, I was still living in a small studio apartment trying to get my para-legal career off of the ground. Many of my old compadres relocated to new cities or got embroiled in their new lives.

Unfortunately, my friendship didn’t fit into their new lives and when we did get together it was awkward for everyone involved. The late night bar crawls were replaced with dinner and drinks with everyone heading home by 9:30 pm.
The good ‘ol days were just not enough to sustain our friendships. In the end, the best thing to do was to limit our contact to superficial emails sent on birthdays and holidays.

At age 28, I surveyed the desolate existence that had become my life in Minnesota and I decided that it was time to relocate. A year later, I packed up my belongings and moved from Minnesota to Los Angeles. Now, my Sunday afternoons are spent trying new recipes and reading how-to manuals on purchasing real estate. I have now grown to appreciate the friendships that I am able to sustain via email.
Each evening, I stroll the along the tree-lined streets of my neighborhood and an inner calm surrounds me.
Bring on 30!
© Alaina Alexander

Alaina Alexander is a freelance writer and creator of the websites:,, and co-creator of She resides in Los Angeles, CA and is working on the cookbook version of


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