K-Man ate dinner last night at the table. No booster seat. Just hanging out with his plate, fork, sippy cup and eating like the rest of us. Holy crap. When did that happen? I know it doesn’t seem like it’s that big of a deal, but what? He’s just sitting at tables now? Just eating like a human? Huh? He’s not quite two-and-a-half. I kinda like having a toddler. Don’t go growing up into an actual boy. The time…it does go quickly. I’m afraid if I blink, I’ll open my eyes and find him using one hand to hold up his pants and the other to send text messages.
K-Man turns 29 months in the same week that I’m turned 480 months. As I barrel down on 40 years, I find myself, not freaking out about being “old,” but instead freaking out a bit on the fact that I feel kinda young. I’m not worrying about all the things that I haven’t done, as much as I can’t wait to get started on all the things I have left to do. Never mind a “bucket list,” I’ve gotta get started on my “aww f*ck it” list. This is the list of things that require an attitude of “f*ck it – let’s do it!”
As K-man turns 29 months and I turn 480 months, I’m again reminded about how age is really just about numbers. And, I’m again reminded about how our accomplishments and definitions of success are artificially skewed by our own reliance on things like possessions, wealthy and media.
If I let myself, I will start to feel kind of bummed about the whole 40 thing. I’ll start to wonder if I wasted G-d knows how many years by not really going for it – cajones out (as they say). I’ll wonder if a fear of failure will have stolen a number of potentially world-shattering years. But, I’ll never know. Fact is – those years are now gone. Memories. For the most part, good memories, too. So, I can’t really complain.
I can’t say that I’ve lived every day to the fullest. I can’t say that I’ve “left it all out on the field” each and every day. There are risks I didn’t take. Risks that I should have taken. Risks, that when taken, would have substantially altered the life I now have. And, with that recognition, it’s awfully difficult to feel badly for myself. I mean, where would I rather be? The question isn’t would I like more money, or a bigger house. The question is where would I rather be? The answer to that one is simple: Nowhere.
I spent one of the greatest days ever with G and K-Man on Sunday. We took the ferry to San Francisco, rode a train to Union Square, chased birds, took a bus back to the ferry building and returned home. After our collective naps, I witnessed pure bliss as K-Man played on fire trucks. There’s nothing better than that. And, a fat bank account, bigger house and/or different car, or whatever couldn’t have made that day any better.
The midlife crisis is all about feeling sorry for what you don’t have. The irony, of course, is that a scant year or even six months prior to big events like turning 480 months don’t bring any crisis. It’s these self-imposed “watershed” events that force us to get all introspective and try to figure out where it’s all gone wrong.
I say, “f*ck it” to that. How about thinking about where it’s all gone right? How about being thankful for what we do have. And, if there are some milestones or achievements that we’ve missed…well, we’re not dead, right? We’re actually just ONE DAY older. No reason that I can’t do today what I didn’t do yesterday.
Every time K-Man sits in the chair, or every time he points out some other bird, or dog or notices a crescent moon, I have no choice but to recognize that these days, months and years aren’t about me anymore. My accomplishments now pale in comparison to sitting up in a chair. That’s an accomplishment.