Somehow when I wasn’t really paying attention, I managed to turn 41.
It’s weird because in a lot of ways, I don’t feel that much different than I did when I was in my 20s. I mean, I’m definitely wiser. And a little more jaded than I was as a wide-eyed, optimistic 20-something. The world has given me a little bit of a crusty side that I’m actually grateful for. A little protective crust can be a good thing. And there’s also the inability to stay up late partying. Not that I was ever much of a party animal back in the day, but these days I’m like a middle-aged Cinderella — midnight hits and instead of turning into a shabby housemaid I turn into a whiney grump. [And folks, whatever ever you do – never, EVER feed me after midnight. It’s bad news. Just sayin’.]
It’s also weird because I’m not sad that I’m 41. As I grow older, I’ll admit that I can’t think too long or too hard about death because I’m still at the point in my life where it scares the hell out of me, despite the fact that it is inevitable. So while some days I carry that fear in the back of my mind, most of the time, I’m just happy and grateful to be alive and healthy.
Because not everyone is so lucky. So as long as I’m still here, still kicking, still healthy, I’m going to be grateful for every single sunrise I get to see. I’ve reached a point in life where I’m feeling fairly happy and content with the person that I am. Sure, there are still plenty of lessons to learn. There is still lots of room to grow and improve and do better, but at this point I’ve realized that this will always be the case. That’s how you know you’re living a good life — you’re growing and changing and rising to the challenges that present themselves to you.
I’ve faced plenty of challenges over the course of my 41 years and I can say without a doubt that learning to overcome them has resulted in me be being a wiser and happier person. Hell, at the rate I’m going, by the time I’m a senior citizen I’m going to be a frickin’ genius.
As I start my 41st year on this earth I’m not sure what the future holds but I do know that I look forward to finding out. It won’t always be easy, I know, but there will always be lessons to learn and improvements to be made.
And most of all, many, many happy memories to be made.