Tomorrow I will wake up and be 50. Fifty. Half a century. Five decades. Over half my life will be over. Out of all my birthdays, this one truly does not feel real. I in no way shape or form feel 50. I feel like I’m in my thirties – which is a creepy feeling when I had a child 31 years ago! I still remember my mom’s 50th birthday party like it was yesterday. An odd feeling of time going by faster than I feel. I don’t see this magical number as bad in any way – or old in any way. I truly believe it is how you live, act and who you surround yourself with that keeps you feeling young…
Laughter: I must laugh everyday – I am the class clown. I get that from my dad. I love to make people laugh, love to laugh and usually deflect to humor when feeling unsure or uncomfortable. It truly does make everything feel better. You can’t take life too seriously. I have wrinkles around my eyes…why would I want to get rid of those with Botox or a “lift” – those lines are reminders of how much I love to laugh and have fun.
Eat, drink and be merry: Am I a perfect single digit size? Nope. Will I ever be? Nope. Do I watch what I eat? Yes. I know what to eat to make me feel good and know what not to eat to feel good. Am I going to pass up a decadent chocolate cake – no – I love chocolate. Am I going to surround myself with organic no sugar gluten free kale filled salads because “It is better for me” or “Isn’t filled with all that crap” – nope. Why you ask? Because most of that is too expensive and tastes like crap. I hate Kale. (if you are the person who LOVES to eat and live that way – I applaud you! And am passing no judgement on to you!) I love a good basket of tater tots and light beer with my girls as well as a good appetizer and glasses of wine with them- screw the calorie intake – we love all those things and it pairs nicely with friendship and laughter. I am in no way saying you should treat your body like crap….I am saying that life is short…drink the wine, eat the cake and have a chip!
Children: I see so many people my age that are empty nesters and at times look at them with a “that light is so far away in the tunnel for me” jealousy…but my best friend always reminds me that we are better at parenting because we are late moms. I also think it was God’s way of having us be best friends AND mom of kids the same age – we can celebrate and complain together! I do love the idea of seeing high school and all the fun of growing up through my girls eyes…how different it is from when I was their age. They do on a weekly basis remind me in a sarcastic tone “We know…we know…’When you were our age’ blah blah blah”. I am the mom who is silly, goofy and wants to be with them and their friends. My daughters may roll their eyes – but their friends like me – I think that says a lot.
Husband: My rock. My laughing partner. My biggest supporter. He keeps me young – probably because he is 6 years older! ha ha ha It is 2018 – not 1950 – he doesn’t expect dinner on the table, laundry done and ironed, kids clean, tidy and quiet. He does more laundry than I (in my defense he has never cleaned a toilet!), he is quick to say “long day – lets just get something quick for dinner”, he irons his own shirts….what I am saying is – having a good partner that shares in all the mayhem truly is a blessing! Do we always get along and its perfect? No, but with age comes wisdom and you realize what is important…being right, getting the last word or making it last?
Friends: I know a lot of people – I have connected people with other people. My friend Kim always says I am the Kevin Bacon – 6 degrees of separation. I laugh. I do know and have a lot of friends. I feel blessed. I also have a small tribe of best close friends that are ALWAYS there for me whenever I need them. We have happy hours, lunches, spontaneous get togethers….Every single time we are together…there are tears of laughter or frustration with one of our lives. But we always leave feeling refreshed, up beat and having a hell of a stomach ache from laughing so much. These people are my tribe – they make me feel normal and happy…all the time. I hope I do the same for them even in some small way.
The Past: We all have one. We all have things in our past that we have been through that we have learned from, hurt from and had a better view on life because of them. Embrace those things….leave baggage in the past and look to the future! If you must look back…look back with love and what you may have gained from it – hurtful or happy filled. Tomorrow is always a fresh start with a clean slate. Why not make it the best it can be??
Self Care: This is something new to me. As a mom, you tend to put your children and everything else before you – ALWAYS. I have learned to sit and be still and make time for me. I treat myself to getting my nails done once in a blue moon, I watch mindless reality TV to find humor and all that eyerolling will keep my eyes strong! I treat myself to a nap, have a good cup of coffee, and tell my hair girl to “do whatever”! I spend hours in the garage creating and being in the zone with my projects – that gives me pure joy. I am slowly starting to be better about taking care of ME first.
I always sum up each decade I live through….my 20’s were being on my own, learning how to handle or not handle a budget, meeting friends, living paycheck to paycheck. Learning how to NOT have credit card debt. Always trying to impress. My 30’s were growing in a relationship, having children and being a real grownup and parent. Not really caring about a career – but about being home with my kids and not feeling bad. Not having to prove anything to anyone. My 40’s I really came into my true self. My past and present lives collided into a sense of peace, calmness and healing. I didn’t need a career to feel fulfilled. I found my fulfillment in creativity, laughter and everyday things. I didn’t care what people thought about me – life is too short not to be your authentic self. I have learned to say “no” at things I am really not interested in doing. Saying what’s on my mind…I am not a “walk on eggshell” type gal. Standing my ground with my beliefs, religion and welcoming to all. Being ok with a Friday night in with family. Realizing I don’t have to have a perfectly clean and organized house to have a friend over for coffee or happy hour. I don’t need “stuff” to be happy. I am actually learning to “shut down” and “unplug” to recharge. I have learned to listen to myself…believe in myself and be true myself.
50 is a number….50 years of living, learning and loving.