Yesterday was my birthday.
I remember when Mom and my grandmother would talk about how old I was getting and then Grandma would say, “You’ll soon be as old as me” and then they’d laugh. When I was a kid I always thought about my age being halfway to something. Halfway to being a big kid. Halfway to being sixteen and then I’ll be big enough to drive the car. Halfway was an important concept when it was halfway to something good but halfway to the end of life? I may not want to think about it but there it is: I’m at the turn, halfway done and heading home, fewer days ahead than behind—middle age. Not something I want to think about but that’s the reality of it.
Entering middle age seems to be a difficult milepost for many people. I’ve always been amused how some people, and I believe it’s a growing number of people, have trouble entering middle age and will deny that there is an end in sight. Denying that they are no longer young doesn’t change the calendar, time marches on.
Let the others color their hair, let them pull muscles and break things trying to regain their lost youth. Let them take their pills and eat their exotic fountain of youth foods and have work done so they can stay forever young. Me? I am standing right here and saying, “Here I am. Here’s where I’m at in life.” I’m man enough to know I can’t live forever. If I’m now middle aged then I’m now middle aged and I’m going to face that reality head on. No denials here. I’m middle aged, halfway home, halfway to 134. Happy birthday to me.