to 50 and beyond!!!

English: An Entenmann's crumb donut, bought fr...

As I stand in line at Starbucks, gazing over the myriad of drool inducing confections, I try to decide which will be the least likely to wrap around my thighs or waistline tomorrow.   A memory comes crashing out of the recesses of my mind, bringing me back to the days when I would come home from school and eat a double-decker ham and cheese sandwich with a tall glass of chocolate milk and eat two Entenmann’s donuts (the ones with the sprinkles on top that (when I consider in retrospect)  resemble rabbit pellets).  This was done in my efforts to gain a little weight.  Those efforts weren’t in vain, they just caught up with me a little later.

What would I give for those days?  Nothing, nada, zero, zilch, I tell ya!  When I say I am loving my forties, I’m not fibbing; not in the least.

Humor me for a moment and let’s walk down memory lane.  We can all admit that our bodies were probably in their prime in our teenage years and yes, even our twenties.  Now, with that said, how many of us can admit that we KNEW it then?  Yes, there were some of us that were confident in that regard, but I assure you if we had that one figured out, we probably struggled with another type of monster.

Enter good old high school, where everyone assumes that everyone else is something they are not.  You have a potpourri of kids, all being raised in particular types of homes, some loving and supportive, some dysfunctional and even harmful.  Add in a profusion of personalities, different styles, habits, gifts and talents, and what do you get?  A large, diverse community of differences being forced to converge and learn the same curriculum, in most cases, in the same way (One important factor here; we aren’t all the same and we don’t learn the same way).  We don’t share the same gifts and talents.  God created us unique and it’s unique we should be.  But, I digress; that is a different topic.

My point is, we either don’t really know who we are and how to fit in at that age or maturity level so we either succeed naturally, fail miserably, give it our best try or we fake it.  This is a tough time in many lives.  Some of us emerged unscathed or stronger from the experience, but I’ve heard stories from some that make me weep.

For me, I would give the high school experience about a 7 on a scale of 1-10.  This was largely due to moving from an area I had lived most of my life, to a new school with kids who had lived out their school career together.  Although I did fit in to a point and had some great relationships, I cringe inside when I think of all of the missed opportunities that I let slip by for fear of trying and failing.  If you add to this the insecurity I felt and the challenges at home as my parent’s marriage crashed and burned, the ranking probably fell to about a 5 by my senior year.  However, my story is a pleasant one if judged alongside many others that I’ve heard.

Alas, we grow up and move on.  Our lives continue to race on and as we make our choices, we live and we learn.  Our youth is filled with fun and foolishness (for most of us) and as we begin to age, we begin to value the important things.  We learn that memories and moments are way more precious than things.  We discover that family and friends are valuable and when we say I love you, we mean it with every fiber of our being. We realize that aging is inevitable and there is nothing we can do to stop it, so we might as well embrace it and enjoy the ride!  We’ve been through a lot by now, we’ve earned our grey (even if we choose to hide it).  By now, many of us have lost a parent or someone else we held dear, some of us have been through divorce and custody battles.  We’ve had ups and downs in the work world, we’ve parented teenagers, experienced illness and life in general.

At this stage of life, I don’t want to wallow in regret – I want to press forward with my face set like flint, on the path that God has chosen for me.  I’m not here for naught; there is a purpose.  Every day is a new adventure and I strive to live them with faithful anticipation and  joy.  I’m thankful for grace and love and second chances and perfectly content at where I am and who I’ve become; in Him.

When my facebook status says “loving life” or something akin to that, I mean it.  I don’t know about all of you, but I am truly enjoying the freedom of the forties; being able to express myself truthfully and transparently without fear of repercussion or any fear (or caring for that matter) of what someone might think.  I feel alive and thriving and liberated and it’s wonderful!

Comments

  1. deanna grimm says:

    Really true and awesome sister!! You truly have a talent in writing! Enjoyed to the fullest!! I’m sure I stand in agreement with everyone else who reads your blogs! They are so good but seems like you are finished before you realize!! With such a wonderful after taste, it leaves you craving more!! Two thumbs up!! I love you! And your blogs:-):-)

  2. Loved this…reminded me of a quote from one of the authors I am currently reading. Robin Jones Gunn says in one of her novels, regarding age “The first 20 are all about charm, from 20-40 it’s about beauty, 40-60 is the contentment season and 60-80 are the dignity years.” Since I will celebrate my 54th on Sunday I will say I am finally learning to be content. Thanks for sharing

  3. Deb Dowacter says:

    Love your blogs! I look with anticipation to find your “Long walks and dark chcolate”! You are truly an inspiration! Keep up the excellent work!

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