I returned to post this week’s blog and realized that the entire month of August was all about my dad’s passing. The past four collections of thoughts were all about that particular topic. While I tried my best to make them informative for you and therapeutic for me, I have never been more relieved to see the calendar flip over to the next month.
Now, September is not without consequences. Someone very close to me…well, actually, it’s me…will turn the big 6-0 on the 20th. Why do they always say “The big 6-0?” Like I could choose the smaller one?
I’ve told some people my theory before and for you younger readers who aren’t wearing readers, please notice this when you reach your mid 30s. In my wrinkled mind, I still feel like I did when I was 35. In my brain, I am 35. Older, yes….wiser, maybe….but that particular point of my life just locked in. Until I get in front of a mirror, I look out through my eyeballs away from my body and I’m a 35-year-old.
When I was in mid-30 territory, I had several good friends in their 50s and remember thinking, “Man, that’s a great decade.” These people all had settled into a great jobs, they had the toys–a boat, a vacation place, they traveled–life was completely under control.
You 30s and unders, let me be your life guide:
30-something The decade you’ll back on when things seem to start coming together. The kids don’t need constant supervision. Or, maybe they do, but you’re relaxing a little now. You’ve bought a house, the income has come up, the job is clicking, you’ve got a great circle of friends and life is good.
40-something The decade where things started to come apart. I remember going to a neighborhood party and within 10 minutes, the guys were all off by themselves, talking about what part of their body hurt the most. Divorces start to show up in that circle of friends.
50-something The decade that the things that fell apart start coming back together again. The biggest thing I noticed about this decade is that you are as developed as a person as you’re going to be. You know what you like, what you’ll put up with and what you won’t. My way or the highway. You start thinking about the fact that you’re clearly past the mid-way point of your life. Parents and friends begin to die. Time to create that bucket list.
60-something I’m not there. Stop pushing.
One thing that this past month taught me (and I’m always looking for something to learn) is that you haven’t heard all the stories yet. Oh, sure, family members go back to the classics a lot and you think, “(sigh), here we go again.” But while talking with my sister Debbie a week ago, she reflected back to her youth and the fact that she was not a very good seamstress. Oh, she took Home Ec in school, but try as she might, she just didn’t pick up the knack of sewing. How bad was she at sewing? One year for her birthday, she got a seam ripper for a gift. That cracked me up. I had never heard that story before.
There’s a lot out there to absorb and here’s some shocking news: its not all on your phone. Talk with the people you care about. Chit chat. The ones who mean the most to you are on different life clocks that you are. It’s a delicate balance between being morbid and savoring every moment of this precious life.
I’m glad to be turning 60. It means I’m still here, still doing what I love to do and looking forward to all the fun ahead. Bring on the new fall season!
And besides, the Mariners traded Fernando Rodney. What more could I ask for?