On Aging and Having One’s Shit Together

It was my birthday on Friday.  Had a short day at work, moved five feet away from my desk to my couch and napped, then went out for dinner with friends to Roost.  It was a very good day.  Getting out and seeing people and doing things has been doing a lot to fill my cup the last couple of months.

I am now 40 years old.  A “geriatric millennial,” as a social scientist so rudely coined several years ago.  As a logophile, I enjoy the inherent opposition of the words “geriatric” and “millennial” being placed together.  I also like the phrase because so many millennials hate it, and, honestly, that makes me want to embrace it even more. 

So far, I’m enjoying my forties, even if I don’t feel 40. I’m not talking about in a physical sense, though I guess I don’t feel 40 in that respect either, my gray hair notwithstanding. What I mean is that I don’t feel existentially 40. A 40-year-old, in my mind, is someone who has their shit together. When I think of this person, I picture my parents at my age: a house, 1.5 kids (my sister counts as the 0.5), confident, secure. AKA, “grown-ups.” Whereas I, on the other hand, barely feel like a functioning adult most of the time. I’m more a person who is still desperately trying to identify and collect his shit, which makes me a few steps removed from being one who worries about keeping said shit together (okay, I may be taking this shit analogy too far).

What’s interesting to me is that… none of this really bothers me too much.  Sure, despite “no worries” being my default catchphrase, I have plenty of worries.  But it all seems doable, surmountable.  I’ll get there, I just need a few more things to align.  Maybe it’s because I take some solace in knowing that, statistically speaking, there is probably still plenty of runway in front me.  All I need to do is keep moving forward.

A birthday gift I received: my own brand of wine.

Photo by Mel C.

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