I recently celebrated having traveled around the sun for 21,900 days (give or take a couple of leap years). I had a lot of assumptions and deep thoughts about this particular milestone in my life.
I'm 60 years old.
Here are 20 of my Big Thoughts about this journey of life.
1) I thought that I would be further along in certain places. I'm not.
2) I thought I'd feel differently than I did when I was in my 20's. I don't.
3) 60 didn't suddenly make me wiser or funnier or more resilient. But then it's the slow-growth aspect of my trajectory that made those things happen. There is no suddenly when it comes to character development. It just seems that way when you're not trying to be too careful about measuring that type of growth from moment to moment.
4) That cliché thing that says you only remember moments? True.
5) I'm particularly diligent about maintaining scrapbooks and documenting my life and those are moments that I collect. Some moments feel much more important as they happen. We remember things that were said, or weren't. We remember expressions. We remember the laughter.
6) I'm so very glad I started documenting my life and the journey my family and I have been on for the past (almost) 9 years. Blogging has been the best thing ever.
7) Perfection being the enemy of the good? True.
8) People won't remember what you wore, but they will remember how you treated them. Today's to-do list will be forgotten soon. Your words and actions remain.
9) I'm feeling all squishy and sentimental and very goofy. I thought I'd be more serious on reaching this milestone. Not a chance. I still find everything irreverently funny.
10) I thought I'd feel much older. I don't know why it is that certain numbers feel bigger than others. I don't feel 60. I don't even know what 60 year olds are supposed to act like (but that's not important right now).
11) I thought I'd be bulletproof by now and wouldn't get my feelings hurt as easily. Not true. However, I maintain a practice of forgiving quickly. Maybe that's the same as bulletproof?
12) I thought I'd be lost after my years of active parenting were over. I am learning that I'm already pretty far into Act Two before I've even had the chance to grieve (or is it celebrate?) the first one.
13) I thought I'd be a plump and matronly sort at 60. White hair and rocking chair with bifocals dangling on the end of my nose and cross-stitching into my old age. Hasn't happened. Except for the plump part. It seems to fill in the cracks in my face quite nicely, thankyouverymuch.
14) I thought I'd be much more reluctant to do new things. Not true. I seem to be busier than ever, going new places and trying new things and meeting new people. Lots of new in my life right now. Who knew? (<--see what I did there?)
15) It never occurred to me that I'd be seriously embracing my naturally curly hair at this point in my life. I spent so many years trying to tame the crazy.
16) I'm less apt to care what people think of me, but much more conscious of their feelings. Maybe empathy is something that grows with age?
17) I am appreciating all the things that make up my self so much more. Maybe that's the beauty of aging and self-care. You get to be more kind to yourself and accepting of what makes you unique.
18) I have found that humility can co-exist with pride when apportioned correctly.
19) Many of the things that I loved as a child, I still do. Playing house and making pretend food and being a make-believe mama have all served me well in my life.
20) I am 60 and my mom is 101. I still want her to be proud of me.
I'm happy to report that I have made it to this 6th decade and I am content to be here. I am happy about where I am in life and I look back at where I've come from with a big smile on my face.
Looking forward to the next chapter. If you're already there, no spoilers, please!