I have been thinking a lot lately about the meaning of this. I won’t bore you with the Webster’s definition. Instead, I am going to focus on what this means to me. I think after all the events of last Friday, we all could use a little distraction, even a little humor. I hope can provide this for you.
I am quickly approaching 42. No small feat if I say so myself. 41 plus years of wandering around my little corner of the globe, trying to dissect some meaning out of all of the static out there. It is not easy. I am finding the world is starting to go a little faster than I am used to. I see how things are geared for the younger generation. ( I am not trying to say I am old, by any means. If there is any luck, I will have a good 30 to 40 years left on this planet ). I am saying however, it is a young persons world. That my friends is the rub. I am finally coming to the realization I am not part of that anymore. I am transisting into the next age group on surveys. I am moving closer to getting an AARP subscription than buying a Playboy. I am becoming part of a demographic that is more concerned with comfort than with making things right. It is scary as hell.
Am I in crisis mode? Maybe. If not a crisis, I am damned close to a frenzy. Things ache that didn’t used to. Parts of my body make noises I don’t recognize. I feel different. I look at things differently. I am a lot closer to 50 than I am 20. Priorities are different. Creativity is gone and replaced by thoughts of mortgages and retirement income. To quote Graham Parker : “My belly’s full, but my soul’s gone dry.” I am not the same person I was at 20. In some ways that is a good thing. In some ways, it’s not. Not that the person I am at 42 is such a great model for society. I am not. I am human. I have hurt people not meaning to and I have been not the most pleasant person. Those things I am working on.
Within all of that however, I do recognize I have the luxury of feeling this way. There are a lot of people who can only worry about day-to-day survival. That is their reality. Their worries stem from where their next meal is coming from or should they buy medicine for themselves or pay the rent. That is a much harsher reality, I do not face. I am grateful for that. I know how lucky I am and I know that things can always be worse.
So, in the end, I am saying that age happens. It creeps up on you like a turtle on speed. Things seems to be going at a good, slow and steady, then WHAM you are looking and feeling like a port-a-potty at a chili cook off. Shat on and flushed. That my friends is what a midlife crisis feels like.