20 Things I Learned in my Twenties

Good morning, guys! It is my THIRTIETH birthday today (wow I feel old just saying that!). I can hardly believe that I was just 20 years old when I started this blog. That’s ten years of sharing my life with you guys. In these past ten years, I graduated from college, got my first big girl job, met my husband, moved five different times, started blogging full-time, got married, got a dog, bought a house, and also grew up. I experienced extreme joy (like on my wedding day) and extreme loss and grief (when my husband lost his parents). But one thing has remained constant, and that’s the support and love I receive from you guys on a daily basis. I am so thankful for your friendship, advice and kind words throughout the years. Let’s be honest, there’s no way I would still be blogging today without your support.

Today I wanted to share some things that I’ve learned in my twenties. Some were hard lessons, and they took me up until year 29 to learn! I am proud of myself for how far I’ve come – I can still see myself as a naive twenty-year old typing her very first blog post while sitting on her twin bed in her sorority house. Obviously, I still have room to grow, and I never want to stop growing and learning. Hopefully when I turn 40 I’ll have a whole new blog post for you. 😉

1. God always has a plan, even when you can’t see it.

There have been plenty of times where I questioned God’s plan for my life. For instance, when I was rejected from my dream job after college. Or when Chris and I broke up after a year of dating. I had no idea that the hardest times in my life would lead to even better things that God had in store for me. For instance, when I was rejected from my dream job, I ended up taking a job in Greenville, S.C, where I met Chris. When we broke up, I was heartbroken, but put alllll of that energy into my blog, day after day, until I was able to get it off the ground. And the breakup was actually great for mine and Chris’s relationship, because we both appreciated each other so much more when we got back together. Both of those things lead to where I am today. Those are small examples; there are plenty more I could give you of how God’s plan was bigger than my own.

2. Wash Your Makeup Off at Night

Gosh such a simple one, but I really wish my college self had taken my own advice! And on that note, invest in a good skincare regimen. Your skin will thank you years down the road.

3. Friend breakups are hard, but sometimes necessary

I didn’t have a single “friend breakup” until my twenties. In my twenties I encountered some people I thought were true friends, even best friends, but didn’t have my best interest at heart. Friend breakups are tough – the grief lasts deeper and longer than grieving over an ex-boyfriend. But you will be happier without someone causing negativity in your life. I can look at where I am now and see how much happier I am without certain people making me feel bad or causing drama.

4. Health is about balance

In my early twenties, I tended to be a little obsessive over my health. I would track every calorie I ate, down to a stick of gum, and obsess over exercising every day. I may have looked healthy, but inside I was the opposite. It wasn’t until my mid-twenties that I discovered intuitive eating. When you listen to your hunger cues, your body will TELL YOU when it’s hungry and when it’s had enough to eat. And something even more amazing happens when you start eating real, whole foods and cut out the processed crap: your body simply knows what to do. I’ve been able to stay at the exact same weight for the past several years without thinking about it at all. I feel amazing. And I still indulge in treats from time to time (especially on vacation!) without thinking twice about it, or feeling “guilty” afterward.

5. A Dog really can be your best friend

I made the decision to get a dog when I was 26, even though some family members and friends warned that I wasn’t ready. They cautioned that I traveled a lot, and I may not be able to handle the responsibility of a dog. Even Chris was against it! But, alas, only you know when you’re ready for a dog, and I felt ready. And it was one of the best decisions I ever made. I am honestly scared to have kids cause I don’t know how I’ll be able to love them more than Winnie! (haha) Seeing that little ball of fluff with her wagging tail puts the biggest smile on my face whenever I walk in the door. In the mornings, I like to watch Good Morning America in bed, and Winnie crawls under the covers in between my legs – I swear I feel happiest right in that moment! She is truly my best friend. I tell her everything, and sometimes I swear she talks back. Since we don’t have kids yet, she is our baby. And yes, Chris did come around – the very first day I brought her home, he was as smitten with her as I was. 🙂

6. It feels good to stand up for yourself

I was incredibly shy growing up. I was always the quiet one in the school, and I often let others walk all over me. Not anymore! I started learning that I had a voice in college, and since then it has grown stronger. And let me be honest with you guys – when you do start standing up for yourself, it feels amazing. Especially if someone is trying to take advantage of you. Don’t let them! You are WORTH IT.

7. Comparing Yourself to others is the fastest way to feel anxious and unfulfilled

It takes practice and self-love to be able to celebrate others’ success, especially when things are not going the way you want in your own life. I’ve learned to stop comparing myself to others (especially other girls on Instagram). We are all on our own journeys. If you feel down on yourself, wake up in the morning and write three things that you’re grateful for.

8. The most important things in life aren’t things, they’re people

The blogging industry is a little frustrating sometimes, because it is so materialistic. People are judged on their success by how big their houses are and what kind of cars they drive. It did not take me very long to figure out that material things are not the key to true happiness. When you die and go to Heaven, you can’t take all your things with you!

9. You Can never please everyone

If there’s one thing blogging has taught me, it’s this! No matter what I do or say, how I dress, or what I believe in, I can’t and will never please everyone. I have learned to stop worrying so much about what others think. I post about what I love and believe, and if someone doesn’t like it, then they can unfollow. I’ve also built up an incredibly thick skin through blogging. When you choose to live your life on social media, you will inevitably receive judgement and criticism from others. I’ve realized that most of the time, when someone is really cruel, it’s because they’re unhappy with their own life.

10. Showing emotion (and crying) is okay

I cry probably every other day. I’m a sensitive person… sometimes I cry at commercials, other times I cry just thinking about how much I love my family and dog. I used to be ashamed to cry in front of others, but I’ve come to realize that it’s just who I am! I think it takes a stronger person to show vulnerability than to hold it all in. I would much rather feel emotions, and feel them deeply, than not feel at all.

11. Instagram is a lie

Instagram is truly a highlight reel of everyone’s life. It is not real life. A person may choose to share the very best parts of their life (including me), but there is so much going on behind the scenes that you don’t know about. I know that I personally only choose to share a fraction of my life with the public. There’s so much going on and so much that I’m feeling that I don’t share. Remind yourself of that the next time you see someone’s “perfect life” on Instagram.

12. You can change your life if you want to

It always bugs me when people tell me that they are unhappy with their lives. They’re unhappy with their house, their job, their body, etc. Well, change it then! If you’re unhappy with your house, then move. Or fix it up – paint is inexpensive and can transform a room. If you don’t like your job, find a new one. Or work hard and start your own business. Unhappy with your body? Start eating healthier and moving more. I am a very strong believer than you (along with God 🙂 ) control your own happiness and your destiny.

13. Wear sunscreen

I REALLY wish I had taken this advice in my early twenties. I never wore sunscreen, especially on my face, thinking that foundation was enough to protect me from the sun. Now I can start to see the effects of that, with wrinkles and sun spots. Now I put on sunscreen every single morning.

14. Drink water and ditch the diet drinks

When I was in my early twenties, I hated the taste of water. Seriously! I preferred Diet Coke, and I NEVER drank water. But this habit led me to be hospitalized for kidney stones. It wasn’t until the past couple of years that I realized how amazing water is, and now it’s pretty much the only thing I drink. When I do drink more water, I can see a major difference in my skin and even my concentration levels. AND I realized how bad diet soda was for me and ditched it altogether – it is filled with chemicals and aspartame, which has serious health risks.

15. Women can Kick Butt

Anyone who really knows me, knows I am a feminist at heart. I think it is ridiculous that some men are scared of women who make more money than them or are more successful! This is 2020 you guys! If you are a woman, go after your dreams. Ask for that raise. It’s not okay for a man in your same position to be making more than you. Women really are amazing – we are emotional, caring, have babies and raise children, and are badass in the workplace, too.

16. It’s okay to have anxiety – and go on medication for it

In my twenties, I suffered from some of the worst anxiety I’ve ever had in my life. Panic attacks, days where I did not want to get out of bed, etc. There are so many of us in the same boat, and it really helps for us all to talk about it. I opened up to Chris and my parents, and they both encouraged me to talk to my doctor. I did, and was prescribed Lexapro for anxiety. It changed my life. You can read more about my mental health journey here.

17. Education Doesn’t Always Come from the Classroom

I learned a lot in school, especially in college, but most of my learning has come from the real world. As in, after college. From work experiences, living alone in an apartment and paying bills, relationship experiences, and traveling. And on that note, I think travel is the quickest way to expand your mind. I have regretted many purchases, but I have never regretted a single trip I’ve taken.

18. Getting pregnant isn’t easy.

I always thought that the minute we decided we were ready for a child, BOOM! It would happen right away. Well, my friends, I was mistaken. We have been trying to conceive since early last year. It has been a difficult journey, and one that is very lonely – not many people understand unless they’ve been through it. If you have a friend struggling to conceive, reach out to them and tell them you’re thinking of them!

19. Marriage is beautiful, but it is hard work.

I always thought that once you got married, it was all roses and butterflies from there. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE being married to Chris. But marriage, like any relationship, requires work and commitment, and compromise. It is truly amazing what happens when you do put in the work, though. You discover a trust and loyalty towards your partner that is deeper than anything you’ve ever known. And I feel like I really understand the phrase my other half, now. Chris feels like apart of myself.

20. Always be kind

You never know what someone else is going through. Kindness and compassion is always the answer.

As always, thank you, thank you, thank you from the bottom of my heart to everyone who comes back to my blog day after day. I am truly grateful for you all. xoxo

Leave a Comment

106 Comments

  1. Happy happy 30th Cait!! It has been such a joy to follow you for so many years. 🙂 You are one of my biggest blogging inspirations, and also one of the kindest people I’ve ever met from blogging. CHEERS to your next decade!!! It’s going to be fabulous!

    xoxo A
    http://www.southernbelleintraining.com

    7.8.20Reply
    • Fernanda

      Your inner beauty truly shines. May God continue to bless you and guide you. Congratulations on 30 trips around the sun and cheers to many more!

      7.8.20Reply
  2. Jessica

    Happiest birthday, beautiful soul. Thank you for sharing the beauty, the difficulties, the reality, …

    Celebrate 🎉 sweetly!

    7.8.20Reply
    • Lauren

      One of your best blog posts. Thank you for sharing this! I just turned 27 so I’m going to start applying some of these tips in my life

      7.8.20Reply
      • Yvonne

        Happy 30th Birthday 🎉Thank you for sharing your wisdom and insight. Be encouraged! Everyone’s pregnancy story is different and well worth it to keep trying and praying. It will encourage someone else someday.

        7.9.20Reply
  3. Happy 30th birthday. Wonderful post! Inspiring and real talk. You are not alone in your journey. I’m sure many of us will relate to you on different levels. I also had problems conceiving. If you ever need someone to talk to about what you are going through, please feel free to reach out. It is emotionally taxing on your body and mind.

    7.8.20Reply
  4. Happy Birthday, Caitlin, and thank you for your insightful, thoughtful post. I may be older than 30 (time flies!) but this was a needed reminder of so many learnings that continue to impact my life. I hope you have an incredible day, welcome to your 30s!

    7.8.20Reply
    • Happy 30th Cait! I’ve been following you since you interviewed for that big girl job! 🙂 (thanks to your momma following me!) It’s been amazing to watch you all these years! Praying for you and Chris

      7.10.20Reply
  5. Happy Birthday! I hope you have a fabulous day!

    What a great list of lessons! Some of them I felt like were a page out of my own life, and some I still need to learn in my 30s 😊

    7.8.20Reply
  6. Kendra

    Happy Birthday!!! I’m just over a month away from turning 30 and I felt myself nodding along to most, if not all, of these. Love your blog and think you’re really wonderful! p.s. thinking about you and sending you love on the pregnancy struggles.

    7.8.20Reply
  7. Sandy

    Happy Birthday Caitlin! I have sent this to my daughters-I agree with every word! I hope 30 is your best year yet!

    7.8.20Reply
  8. Andrea Shaw

    Happy 3oth Birthday!!! 🎁 🎂🎈🎉 I hope that you have a vey blessed day!!!

    7.8.20Reply
  9. I rarely read entire blog posts, but I read this entire one. Such great insights, Caitlin! And be assured of my (and many others’, I’m sure) prayers for a little one to join you soon!

    xo,
    Brittany

    7.8.20Reply
  10. Viola

    Happy Birthday! Thanks for sharing your learning experiences and the great advice.

    7.8.20Reply
  11. Shaunda Rodriguez

    Happy birthday! I was introduced to your blog three yrs ago by my daughter. As a mother and surgeon, your talent, good heart and intelligence are obvious to me . Although I am more than 10 yrs older than you, you are relatable and a good source of information and energy. Enjoy your day and I wish you a great year ahead.

    7.8.20Reply
  12. Alejandra

    Happy birthday Caitlin!! You are an amazing person, you’re my inspiration and fave blogger ever. Please never stop inspiring us!

    7.8.20Reply
  13. Happy Birthday Cait!! This was a beautiful reflection, thank you so much for sharing. Sending you all the good energy for a baby <3

    7.8.20Reply
    • Monica

      Happy 30th Birthday! Big fan of your Instagram and blog! You are so real and inspiring. I have never commented on any person I follow that I don’t actually know, but really felt like I had to let you know you are doing such an amazing job! This last piece with the 20 items really touched home for me. I’ll be 30 this year too, so such an amazing time to reflect. Xo

      7.9.20Reply
  14. Krista

    Happy birthday!! I feel you on the struggles of conceiving. It took us almost 2 years the first time, but now we have an amazing 17 month old girl and a baby boy on the way! Hang in there, and thank you for sharing!!

    7.8.20Reply
  15. Happy 30th birthday! I absolutely loved this post – thank you for sharing!

    7.8.20Reply
  16. Joan

    Happy 30th Birthday!!!
    I love your list, a lot. I’m 42 and a mom of two. The 30s are a ton of fun but sure keep up with that sunblock! The entry about trying to have babies is definitely true. You could probably have an entire thread of comments on conception struggles. Myself included. Big hugs and enjoy your special day!!

    7.8.20Reply
  17. Taylor Sparrow

    Hey Caitlin,

    First, I just wanted to say I love following along with you and love your 20 tips! But, I just wanted to share with you my pregnancy journey. You mentioned you and Chris have been trying for a while, and it has been difficult, and that you feel alone. I always like to share now, because I was in your shoes, and I had never felt so alone! A lot more women struggle to get pregnant, but no one ever talks about it, as if its a bad thing! Just like you said, unless you have been through it, you just might not understand. It took my husband and I 2 years and 2 miscarriages before we finally got the positive pregnancy test for my (almost) 6 month old baby girl! I know while you are in the moment, it is hard, sad, and lonely, but going back to your first tip, just know that God has a plan for everyone, and once things happen and fall into place, it will be exactly as it should have been! Hang in there, and just know I will be thinking of you both!

    7.8.20Reply
  18. Mary Beth Ivester

    This was my favorite blog post you’ve ever written! Loved it so much. Thank you! HAPPY 30th BIRTHDAY 🙂

    7.8.20Reply
  19. Laura Leigh

    First off HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Second, I feel you on the feeling old thing when saying 30. I turned 30 in December and it has not been easy getting use to that. I hear so many great things about your 30s though and how they will be your favorite years – so I look forward to that and know they will be amazing for you! Finally, thank you for sharing all of this with us! I could not agree with you more on every single thing you wrote and you taught me a few things from this list as well. So again thank you! Have the best birthday and I will be praying for God to bless you two with a baby soon.

    xo Laura Leigh
    https://louellareese.com

    7.8.20Reply
  20. Tiffany Reynolds

    Happy 30th doll! I can’t believe i have seen you grow so much through the years and have been on this journey with you! Everything you just said I completely agree with mostly love and compassion for others is always the answer. Keep going, it keeps me going! Love, Tiffany

    7.8.20Reply
  21. Erin

    Happy Birthday Caitlin! What an inspiring and honest blog post. I have been new to following you within the last year. Honestly, I’m a lot older than you, well not that old but turning 43 in August. I’ve always loved style and appreciate your modest approach that even I can pull off at my age. I have a 13 year old daughter and we always love your posts and positivity. I can relate to you in so many ways the list is too long to put here. But I am a Believer and put Christ first in my life. He is my Rock and I always seek Him in any decisions, especially the big ones I need to make. Of course discussions with my husband are key but we seek God’s wisdom together first. I can tell you first hand life just continues to get sweeter. The 30s rock but my friend, the 40s are just as good. So it’s great how you’ve listed so many things you’ve learned like you said. And you’ll just continue to grow and mature and become wiser as you go through your 30s. My husband and I were married for 8 years before we had our daughter and we cherished all that time together. So enjoy this time with Chris and getting to know him even more. It truly will strengthen your marriage further. We’re going on 22 years this December!! You are a very wise and kind person and to be so young still. Thanks for the smiles you bring to my family and for just being You. And just remember, as much as all your family and friends and fans love you, God loves you EVEN MORE and is always a Best Friend!!

    7.8.20Reply
  22. Kristin

    Happy 30th! I absolutely adore your blog and this post is so indicative of what a beautiful, humble, and honest soul you are. Your vulnerability, sweetness, beauty, and style is so inspiring. I’m 34, married now for 12 years with 3 kids and almost every one of these 20 life lessons spoke to me (from the crying from loving my family so much, to the struggles with kidney stones, to the friend break-ups, and more). Just wanted to say how much your wisdom and openness means to so many of us who deal with the same issues and your blogs are valued, not just for the pretty clothes, but also for your inspiring content that reaches us on the soul-level.
    Keep up the good work, and enjoy your day today; I hope it’s the BEST! xx

    7.8.20Reply
  23. Ana Finck

    Happy birthday pretty lady!! Thank you for letting us ride alone all this time. You are truly and inspiration. Cheers to 30!

    7.8.20Reply
  24. Emily

    Happy birthday!!!! You are SUCH a positive influence on my life and I love this list you shared. I just graduated from college and I definitely need to incorporate more of these lessons into my life. I hope you have the best day and the best year!

    7.8.20Reply
  25. Sarah

    Happy 30th Birthday!! Love your lessons learned and thank you for sharing so much of yourself with us!

    7.8.20Reply
  26. Colleen

    Happy Birthday! Great advice, thanks for sharing 🙂

    7.8.20Reply
  27. Happy 30th Birthday!!!! Thank you for sharing your life with us over the past 10 years. You have such a beautiful soul and you truly bring light into so many peoples lives. And I have to say I absolutely loved this post! I just turned 30 myself and with everything that’s been going on with the virus I didn’t take the take to even think about it or what it meant to me as a woman to be starting this whole new chapter of my life. So thank you for giving me the opportunity to reflect with you!

    7.8.20Reply
  28. Happy Birthday gorgeous! I hope you have the greatest day. You deserve it! <3

    xx
    Key
    https://storiesbysuddreth.com/

    7.8.20Reply
  29. Tracy Palica

    Happy Birthday! You are a beautiful 30 year old, inside and out!! God Bless!

    Tracy Palica

    7.8.20Reply
  30. Lauren

    Happy 30th birthday, Cait!!! Enjoy your day and make sure Chris spoils you!! Beautiful post and wonderful insights from your 20s!
    I wanted to share my pregnancy journey with you and let you know, you are NOT alone. I am 32 and my husband and I have struggled for 2 years. We’ve been through IVF and had a very late pregnancy loss and still born. My biggest advice? Find friends you trust with your whole heart to support you in your journey. My friends were invaluable during my journey and we became even closer. They have cried for me and with me. I have seen so many doctors, practitioners, research, etc. and have a lot of new insights. If you ever need someone to spill your thoughts to, I’m HAPPY to talk through the waiting phase or share my story so you know you aren’t alone!
    Wishing you all the best!

    7.8.20Reply
  31. Elizabeth Vick

    I think this is my favorite post. 🙂
    Happy birthday!!!

    7.8.20Reply
  32. Shana

    Happy Birthday! Letting go of friends is not easy but necessary so well done! Also trying to conceive, I think once you are in the storm it seems like everyone has a story. We tried for 6 years, suffered loss, and eventually jumped directly to IVF. If I can suggest anything it’s get a sex therapist for lack of a better word, if you guys are open to it, because it can really kill things when it becomes more of a routine than spontaneous 🙂 Super personal choice but ours was amazing and you don’t just talk about sex hahahahha you discuss your relationship, making sure you are in the same place for continuing to try, how long you will try, intervention or not you are willing to take, etc.

    7.8.20Reply
  33. Logan Kinner

    Happy birthday!! I just want to thank you for this, I really loved it and can relate a lot even only being 21.

    7.8.20Reply
  34. Kristen Cottrell

    Happy Birthday!🎉 I absolutely love this post! Thanks for the amazing advice 💕

    7.8.20Reply
  35. Anon Reader

    Happy birthday! Good lessons…at 34, I feel you on the sunscreen and skincare, haha. Good luck with your pregnancy journey – it looks like you’ve heard from lots of people in the same boat already, but we also struggled to conceive our second, after getting pregnant quickly with the first. It’s so common but people don’t feel like they can talk about it (at least I didn’t) so it feels isolating, especially when you’re in that two-week wait. If it’s any comfort, over half of my mom-friends had to do some kind of fertility treatment to conceive, but they all got babies eventually. You will too!

    7.8.20Reply
  36. S

    this was so raw, real, and honest. I’m turning 30 in two weeks and man do I respect you so much and how truly vulnerable this was while being extremely sincere. I hope your 30s are filled with joy, adventures, and successful.

    7.8.20Reply
  37. Daniah Khan

    Happy 30th Birthday! It has been an honor to follow your journey and am looking forward to watching you grow! You’ve been nothing sort of inspirational.

    7.8.20Reply
  38. Jeanne Mcallister

    Happy Birthday Caitlin ! You are absolute favorite blogger and I have learned so much from you ! From fashion to health you have inspired me ! I loved reading this post and you are spot on about all of it ,especially trusting in God . Thank you for all the good advice and have a Happy Happy Birthday !

    7.8.20Reply
  39. Julie McCarter

    This is Amazing!! What a great way to reflect and celebrate your first thirty years!! I hope your birthday has been Amazing!! Thank you for sharing this! BTW Love your outfit.. that blouse is so Beautiful!! 🖤 Cheers Girl! 🥂🥳💕

    7.8.20Reply
  40. Chelsea

    Happy 30th birthday! Loved this post! I’ve been following along for the past 5 years and had no clue we were the same age! You always have the best posts! And your travel guides are 🙌🏻! Enjoy your day!💕🎉🎂🥂

    7.8.20Reply
  41. Jane

    We had to do IVF to get pregnant after trying for a year. My best advice is do not wait to seek out treatments and get testing done for both you and your husband. It is not easy and it is lonely but medical technology is amazing. You will get there. Stay strong.

    7.8.20Reply
    • Michelle

      Yes do not forget about male factor infertility! It took us about three years to get pregnant, and a year and a half was “wasted” not knowing about MFI issues (then more delays for surgery and recovery). Best wishes and Happy Birthday Caitlin!

      7.9.20Reply
      • Jane

        Yep male factor was our reasoning too and most of the time with that they want you to do the more intense treatments – for us we chose IVF because it was the fastest and most economical route. Praying for you Caitlin. I love your blog!

        7.9.20Reply
  42. Brittany

    Happy Birthday! I turn 30 in 10 days and I can relate to every one of these life lessons! You’re truly an inspiration ❤️

    7.8.20Reply
  43. Grace

    LOVE this post, Caitlin!! I’m 23, and I’m literally purchasing Super Goop sunscreen online as I write this, ha! Your Instagram is my absolute favorite, and I’ll admit I stock it when I’m in need of fashion/hair/makeup inspiration (which is like everyday)!! Thanks for sharing such great advice. I hope you had the best birthday ever!!! Cheers to your 30th!

    Grace

    7.8.20Reply
  44. Jean

    Happy happy birthday! Thank you for this post. I admire you so much. Your honesty, vulnerability, positivity and strength. Wishing you and your family lots of love and happiness.

    7.8.20Reply
  45. Wajeha Barakat

    Im in my mid-twnties and related to this post so much. I’ve learned a lot of these things in my first 5 years and slowly learning the rest (like sunscreen and water). Even though I come from a different faith (Islam), I really appreciated the faith based aspect of your points. So spot on!

    7.8.20Reply
  46. So beautiful! Happiest of birthdays to you!! 🥰

    7.8.20Reply
  47. Anne

    Happy Birthday!! 🎉
    I enjoy following you so much. I feel like even though your life seems perfect in photos, you really open up your life to your readers in a way that is so relatable! Thank you for sharing your life with us. And as someone who has struggled with infertility, please know you are not alone. 💕

    7.8.20Reply
  48. Happy Birthday! Thank you for being so transparent in this post. I love reading your blog! Such good advice for us ladies in here.

    7.8.20Reply
  49. Ash

    Happy Birthday! ❤️ I love this post. I’ll be 30 next year and I totally agree with each of these statements!

    7.8.20Reply
  50. Meg

    Happy Birthday!
    This was a great post, thank you for sharing. I can really relate to the loneliness of trying to start a family and it’s just not happening yet. I always appreciate your openness and honesty. Best of luck and I hope 30 is your best year yet!

    7.8.20Reply
  51. Vjosa

    I loved loved loved this post. I am 25 and couldn’t agree with this more. I’m going through many of these things now. Thank for you always sharing your life!! Praying for you guys and a baby soon ❤️ Just keep reminding yourself God DEFINITELY has a plan.

    7.8.20Reply
  52. Macy Breaux

    LOVE this!!! Your advice is so relatable, in so many ways. It really spoke to my heart tonight. Thanks for being true to yourself. Love your blog!! Xoxo!
    -Macy B.

    7.8.20Reply
  53. This was so so good and lovely in it’s honesty! I am not a Christian, but it still very much spoke to me in how you have to take control of your life, but also be patient when things don’t go exactly right. I also love that a picture pretty fashion blogger defines herself as a “feminist” too! I believe every girl that’s born should be a feminist in going after her own dreams and reaching out to help the women who come after.

    7.8.20Reply
  54. Bre

    Aww, I love this!! Thank you for this post. I really needed it!!

    7.8.20Reply
  55. Elle

    Happy Birthday!!! I love all these!!

    7.9.20Reply
  56. Felicity

    Happy Birthday Caitlin!! As a fellow sensitive water sign (Pisces) I totally cried reading this because it was so real and moving. I’m 22 and a recent college grad and sometimes I just feel so lost, but reading this post made me feel so heard and hopeful. You truly feel like a wise big sister giving us younger girls amazing advice! Thank you!
    xoxo,
    Felicity

    7.9.20Reply
  57. Lauren

    Thank you for being so refreshingly honest ! I love you and your blog. Happy 30th birthday, you are wise beyond your years !

    7.9.20Reply
  58. Petra

    Dear Caitlin, happy birthday! This post made my day! it is a great reflection, so inspiring and really true!

    7.9.20Reply
  59. Linda

    Wise words from someone so young – well done. I am 55 and agree with everything you’ve said Caitlin. Happy Birthday!! I’m so glad your hubby did something special for you at this tricky time. Good man! Best wishes to you for the next chapter. xx

    7.9.20Reply
  60. This is probably my favorite blogpost of you ever, and I am a huge fan of your blog in general haha! Thanks for being so raw and honest here, I found this post to be extremely inspirational. Happy birthday to you gorgeous and keep on doing amazing work – you are such a motivation for so many people! 🙂
    xx Janine
    https://walkinmysneaks.blogspot.com

    7.9.20Reply
  61. Emily Ashton

    Hi! I’m about to be 30 at the end of July, and I’m so there with you that we can’t be this old! 😱 this post really resonated with me, and I wanted to say struggling with infertility is the literal worst — you are not alone. Especially when it’s unexplained! I’m sure you have had a lot of resources sent your way, but her hormones academy was a great resource for me and I learned I had low progesterone after I ovulated and ended up being prescribed some additional by my provider and after two years of trying an no real answers from my drs that worked! Keeping my fingers and toes crossed for you that this is your year 💗💗💗

    7.9.20Reply
  62. Happy Birthday Caitlin. 🥳 Loved this blog post and your honesty. It brought tears to my eyes! ❤️ thank you for sharing your life with us. You’re one of the few bloggers I still follow today because you stay true to yourself.

    -ody

    https://happy2thecore.com/

    7.9.20Reply
  63. Lindsay

    Great post – thanks for sharing! Hope you had a nice birthday!

    7.9.20Reply
  64. Happy Birthday! Your life and your faith are an inspiration. 🙂
    xoxo

    7.9.20Reply
  65. Julie

    Great blog! I turned 30 in December of last year and I experienced so many of these things and it’s so true! Before I turned 30, I felt like I was never going to find my husband, I was envious of other women’s lives, and just felt like I wasn’t going anywhere. I broke up with my boyfriend after 4 years and was living on my own for the first time. But God has a plan. I met my husband and we were married in 6 months (November 2019)! We both instantly knew. I also separated from my best friend of 15 years. It was so hard but necessary. Thank you for the great reminders!!

    7.9.20Reply
  66. Rachel

    This was such great and sweet advice Caitlin!!! Thank you so so much for sharing and happy belated birthday! I love reading your blog and keeping up with y’all 😊

    7.9.20Reply
  67. Cassie

    This is beautiful and so informative! Thank you for sharing. Happy Birthday 🎊

    7.9.20Reply
  68. Amanda

    This is one of your loveliest posts – Happy Birthday! a_hoye

    7.9.20Reply
  69. Kasia

    Happy Birthday!! Im so greatful you still carry on this blog! I love to look here and read your posts! They always turn me on some positive vibes and calming me down 😀 I would comment your posts more, but my english is not so good ;P
    I wish you all the best and pray for you <3
    wanna be you when i grow up!

    7.9.20Reply
  70. Nicci

    Happy 30th birthday Caitlin!! I was in the same boat as you with conceiving. I thought it would be so easy and then found out I was wrong. I’d suggest meeting with a fertility specialist sooner rather than later; you’ll have a baseline to work from and it can help prevent the frustration of months/years of waiting and thinking”maybe it will finally happen this month.”

    7.9.20Reply
  71. Gail

    Such great advice and I’m almost 60! Two thing I wish I had learned at your age is … wash off your makeup at night, and use sunscreen everyday. I did neither, am lucky that I have good skin, and work hard at it now.

    Happy Birthday!

    7.9.20Reply
  72. Kelly

    Happy Bday! May it be your best year yet! Thank you for all the positivity you put out there!

    7.9.20Reply
  73. Elizabeth Walser

    Love this post. Happy 30th beautiful 😍 I’ll be 25 in September but can already relate to many of these. I got married within the last year and it was honestly the best day ever! Such happy happy memories. But in 2019 my grandpa was murdered during an armed robbery and it has left me with grief and heartache thats so deep. You can bet I’ve already grown and learned so much from that. Keep being you and sharing a mix of honest and fun content!! ❤️❤️

    7.9.20Reply
  74. Ashton

    Happy HAPPY birthday! I hope it’s been wonderful. Thanks for sharing that getting pregnant hasn’t been easy for you- it hasn’t been easy for us either (in fact, this may be the most emotionally painful experience of our lives). You are not alone. I am praying for your future family as I pray for ours. Sending big, big love to you for this year.

    7.9.20Reply
  75. Dacie

    Happy birthday!! I loved your blog post. I’m 36 years old and every single thing you listed is exactly what I would say too. 💕

    7.9.20Reply
  76. Erin

    Happy big birthday, Caitlin! I hope this year (and decade!) will be the best ever. Keep being your lovely, inspirational self!

    7.9.20Reply
  77. Kathy

    Happy Birthday Caitlin!!! This is one of my all time favorite posts of yours. I love your blog, your insight, your sense of style and decor. I am so happy I found your blog a few years ago. You are like my dear friend who I get up every morning and enjoy coffee with as I wake up. Please don’t ever stop blogging! I get tremendous inspiration from you and learn a lot too, and I am a lot older than you. Keep up the great work! I wish you a beautiful day and many many more happy and healthy years. All my best to you! Kathy

    7.9.20Reply
  78. Katie

    Hello and happy 30th! I’ve followed your blog for a long time but never commented. Thank you so so much for opening up about the difficult process of conception and about mental health. My husband and I are on our 19th cycle of trying (a year and a half) and it’s honestly been the most difficult thing I’ve ever been through. The anxiety and depression it has caused is more than anyone who hasn’t been through it can imagine. It can feel incredibly lonely but know that, though it’s unfortunate, so many people can relate to the struggle. I’ve recently started following a number of really positive infertility accounts on Instagram which has provided such a hopeful community of people going through similar struggles.

    7.9.20Reply
  79. Maria Fory

    Happy belated birthday Caitlin!!!! I hope your 30s are even more amazing than your 20s and that God give you all the desires of your heart (on His timing, as your said in your first point. I have followed you have of your 20s if not earlier and I love love love your blog. You were thw first blogger I ever follow and forever my favorite (I always tell my friends). Thanks for being such an amazing soul and for being so kind an awesome.

    May your 30s be your best years yet. 😊

    7.9.20Reply
  80. Happy birthday!! I loved reading this post. <3

    7.9.20Reply
  81. Happy happy birthday!! 🙂 I’ve been reading your blog for a long time and this is definitely one of my favorite of your posts! Honestly such good advice for me since I’m in my 20s. Thank you thank you thank you!

    7.9.20Reply
  82. Nancy

    Happy 30th Caitlin! This is my first time to comment on your Blog but I wanted to commend you for being vulnerable in sharing both the joys and the struggles of your real life. I’m much older than you but still I enjoy reading your Blog. You’re a beautiful young woman on the outside but listening to your heart, as in this post, you are even more beautiful on the inside. Because of your sensitivity towards the Lord, I suspect as God leads, you will be sharing more of life’s real meaning, which in turn will be a blessing to others. I’m praying God will bring that precious baby into yours and Chris’ life at just the right time. Blessings!

    7.9.20Reply
  83. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!! I’m turning 30 this year too and I have to say all of these are so so so on point! I think if you learn all of these in your 20s you are very blessed! Some people don’t come to these realizations all their life. I feel so happy there are open and beautiful souls like you in the world to share these ideas with everyone. You are an amazing role model to many! I hope you have the best birthday ever. Sending you, Winnie, and your family love!

    7.9.20Reply
  84. Marsh

    Happy Birthday!!!

    (By the way,,You look lovely!)

    7.9.20Reply
  85. Janie

    Hi Cait! I turned 30 this year, too, and have been following your blog for years! I don’t want to overstep since its a sensitive subject, but I struggled to conceive at 25 and now have 2 kids through IVF. I just want to share that you should consider a reproductive endocrinologist if you haven’t, and not waste time asking your obgyn for help. In my experience, obgyns know very little about infertility, and if a doctor is prescribing you Clomid or any other drug, they should be doing frequent ultrasounds to monitor your reaction to these drugs. I regret even spending 6 months thinking the obgyn could help me get pregnant. My RE diagnosed me with oligoovulation (irregular ovulation) and then unexplained infertility. Wherever you are on your journey, know that science makes it all possible! Good luck 💕

    7.9.20Reply
  86. Jackie

    You are so sweet! And one of my fav bloggers. I love this post and helped me a lot 😘

    7.9.20Reply
  87. Hello and happy birthday! I’ve been a long-time reader, although I don’t comment a lot. I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed this post. I agree with everything you said! I’m about five years older than you, but the life lessons still ring true. Thanks for sharing!

    7.9.20Reply
  88. Riki

    This was the best blog post I’ve ever read. Happy birthday! You are a light in the blogging space!

    7.9.20Reply
  89. I’m in my early 20s right now and I’m definitely guilty of things like comparing myself to others and feeling anxious about it😅 Anyways, loved reading about the things you learned in your 20s! Very helpful and Happy 30th Birthday!!

    7.10.20Reply
  90. Happy 30th Birthday Caitlin! What a beautiful post, with so many great things to remember. You are a light in this world and that is why I follow along. Sending love and prayers for you on this special occasion!! Xo

    7.10.20Reply
  91. Crystal Yeaman

    Love this!! Happy belated birthday

    7.10.20Reply
  92. KENDRA MATERASSO

    WOW, thank you so much for sharing about “friend break-ups” because currently, I have been struggling with this – with a specific friend who also happens to be a sister-n-law which adds an additional challenge BUT knowing that you are not along struggling with this is something that is helpful. And everything you say is true – it is hard, very difficult and sad but we do not need the negativity. It has taken me a long time to pinpoint the issue and I really focused on myself being positive and kind, not only for me but that is the person I am and want to remain. A negative person tends to bring me down and although I still have not figured out a way to have that conversation with her, just knowing I am not along in my feelings is helpful. I know I will see her at family functions but I have had to remove myself from a close group of girlfriends that she is part of because I leave sad and hurt and often end up crying because she can be so hurtful to me. I think your reference to having my best interests at heart is so poignant because this is exactly my struggle. I appreciate you sharing as it has helped me. Blessings to you – K

    7.10.20Reply
  93. Heather

    I’m out of my 20s by… well… …. more than a decade…. but all of these are good lessons to learn and practice at any age.. I think #20 – “Always be kind” is the most important one. Be kind to others, yourself, your family, friends, strangers — the world. If we all strive to do this every day, the world might just be a little better and brighter. Thanks Caitlin for opening up and being honest and vulnerable. Happy birthday and wishes for many many more happy days.

    7.11.20Reply
  94. Brooklyn

    Happy belated birthday Catilin!! Everything you said is so true – we all should learn this. When the time is right, the baby will be yours. Keep believing and staying in faith!

    7.11.20Reply
  95. Quinn

    Happy birthday! The 30s are the best because a lot of your insecurities from your 20s are now gone. I’ve never been happier than now at 33 and currently expecting my first baby after 2 years of infertility and IVF!

    ‘It starts with the egg’ is a great book on female fertility – highly recommend. Also my RE had me cut way back on animal based proteins. Vegetarian sources of protein are known for being better fertility aids. Diet + fertility is one of her specialties and her treatments worked for me obviously so I do trust it. I know you used to be vegetarian which is why I’m even bringing this up.

    7.12.20Reply
  96. This is really amazing Caitlin 🙂 I am in my mid-twenties, and love lists like these for some life perspective. I definitely am on the sunscreen train, aha! I really hope you could have a great quarantine birthday, and it will be one that you remember! Happy belated birthday! Cheers girl!

    Libby
    http://premedwearspearls.blogspot.com/

    7.12.20Reply
  97. Melanie

    Happy 30th birthday! I’m turning 39 next month and love your blog. These are all great tips! I got married at 30 and had my son at 34. Being a mother is the craziest and best journey you will be on. Being married can be hard work even if you have known the person a long time (I have been with my husband 17 years and almost 9 years married). In your 30s, you start to feel more grown up and independent. Friendships also take turns because now usually everyone is married with kids and people can change. In my 30s, many big life changes happen and it can be overwhelming but be grateful for the changes because I agree that there is a reason why things happen the way they do. Now that I’m close to 40, I no longer care what others think and I’m my own person. Also, don’t try to keep up with the Jones’, it’s a never ending battle especially as a mom. Enjoy your 30s and I know that baby will come for your and your husband 😀

    7.13.20Reply
  98. Lorena Skinner

    I totally understand the infertility struggle! My hubby and I have been trying for 3 years with no luck. I always assumed by 30 I would have a child but not what God has planned…keep your head up! & happy belated birthday!

    7.14.20Reply
  99. Jessica Hanna

    Hi Caitlin! I have been following you for about 8 years but have never commented! I loved this post- so real and authentic and great life lessons in general. The point about getting pregnant is so true! They make it seem like you will get pregnant so easily in health class and it is so not true! Well it wasn’t for me at least! We tried for years and finally had a chlomid baby (and now have a 3 yr old and 1 yr old!), but that brings me back to your other point that God’s plan is better than your own. It was so hard waiting, but everything worked out how it was suppose to! I wish you nothing but happiness and another great 10 years and I can’t wait to keep following your journey!

    7.15.20Reply