Ever since I’ve passed the 40 year mark in my time on this planet of ours I’ve been getting a lot of those cliche like remarks. “Now you can work on the wisdom part of life.” “So it really is age before beauty from now on.” (Ha ha on that one by the way. You’re a master of humor in your own mind. I promise.)
I actually don’t really have a problem with being over 40. I like it a whole lot more than I did most of my 20’s, and the addition of a daughter has already made it so it has put most of my 30’s to shame. Still sometimes something happens that makes me dwell on it.
This past week I stopped to grab what I call a ‘fancy coffee.’ In the past it was a large mocha with whipped cream, and it could be any type of mocha. If they had a specialty mocha feature I hadn’t tried it was in my hot little hand off the counter before they could take a breath. Which brings this up: Honestly once you’ve gone down the slippery slope, why bother pretending you’re doing any thing near healthy by not having the whipped cream on top? I don’t get it. In any case, since the advent of the paleo diet in my life it has been replaced by a latte, light on the foam and with almond milk and maybe a little cinnamon.
I almost derailed this post. Let’s bring it back around.
I don’t get carded much any more, so I’m always rather pleased when I do. Makes me want to give the cashier a huge hug that will make everyone uncomfortable, but I haven’t done it yet. This day the lady at the coffee shop was my almost victim. She checked the picture and then she did a quick glance at the birth year and paused. She handed my ID back to me slowly and said “You look younger than your age.” I accepted the compliment gracefully and made my standard quip about it being the Filipino blood. Then she said what struck me as amusing and contemplation worthy, “It must be nice to know who you are.” I smiled, picked up my coffee and left. After all, I haven’t ever thought I’d need a quick quip for that kind of comment.
It must be nice to know who you are. I thought about that on and off all day between wire-framing the mobile app I’m working on and mapping out the data structure for a proposal of a site. I began obsessing about it really. See, I’m not at all sure I know who I am.
But I’ve heard it said that to find who you are you need to look to who you’ve been. Alright let’s do that.
I’ve been alone and I’ve been over crowded. I’ve been someones dream come true and someones nightmare. I’ve been someones ‘One That Got Away’ and someones ‘Thank God She Got Away.’ I’ve been someones greatest joy and someones greatest disappointment. I’ve been smart and I’ve been… less than smart. I’ve been dramatic and I’ve been calm to the point of being a walking frustration. I’ve been a conundrum and an easy read. I’ve been up and I’ve been down. Lost and found. Crazy and sane. Overworked and bored. A source of awe and a source of ‘meh.’ I’ve been wanted, needed and desired. And I’ve been the opposite of all that as well. I have learned and I have forgotten. I have juggled balls and I’ve dropped them only to find they were made of glass.
I have been and done all those things and more, all at that same time. I continue to be and do all those things and more now. I will be and will do all those things and more tomorrow, and all the tomorrows I’m granted after.
Even now with people living longer there is still this idea that with age comes an understanding of how life works, that it becomes easier to navigate, and that somehow a magical switch gets flipped and you just know everything about yourself there is to know. Of course none of that is true really, or at least I hope not. Because if this is really all there is to me… well damn… that’s going to be a disappointing next few years.
I have my new quip. I don’t know myself yet, I hope I never do. I’m not done learning everything there is to learn.