I have a tendency, on my birthday to reflect on “what hasn’t happened yet.” To reflect on the unaccomplished, and be sad about all that has yet to be done. Yes, today I am turning 39 years old, and I wonder, where in the world the time went. I know, I know, I am supposed to focus on what I have accomplished, I’m supposed to be grateful for making it to this point in my life, because the truth is, lots of people didn’t make it through the year. Lots of people, including my own beloved sister, didn’t make it to be 39 years old.
I know, I get it. But even when I think like that I’m thinking within the realm of comparison. And frankly, I am getting really tired of comparing myself to others. There is some comparison, I think that can be healthy, but this constant comparison to everything and everybody is just unbelievably exhausting.
I’ve been asking myself this question for the past couple of years:
What would my life look like if I lived it truly for me? On my own terms, without considering what other people thought about me, or considering where I am supposed to be.
- Would I quit my job and join the circus?
- Would I run a marathon?
- Would I climb a mountain?
- Would I run for political office?
The truth is that I wouldn’t do any one of those things because those things are not me. But if those things were in my character, would I have the courage to do them without worrying about what others think?
Sometimes I live within the truth of that question, and sometimes I don’t. I wonder what people think of me. I am after all quickly approaching 40 and have never been married, no romantic attachments to speak of, and have no kids. I wonder if people think there is something wrong with me.
But there are times that I stop myself from that thinking and realize that others haven’t lived my journey. So if people think ill of me for not living a life similar to theirs, that’s their problem. My life is about where God wants me to go and do and feel and experience. The lessons I need to learn, the experiences I need to have are completely unique. There are still areas of connection I can feel with others, but life, for me is mine to live under the direction and guidance of God.
So what does life look like for me as I celebrate this 39th birthday?
I am healthy, but could stand to loose a few pounds. Filled with love, but empty and lonely at times. Professionally fulfilled, but often wondering if that’s all there is. Excited about possibilities, but exhausted from responsibilities.
I’m a daughter, an aunt, a caregiver, cat mom, writer, musician, researcher, teacher, speaker. I’m a Leo, I have a big heart, I’m sensitive, loyal, sweet, caring, moody, depressed, happy, sad, beautiful, insecure, witty, mean, sexy, sexual, self-aware, repressed, hard on myself, intelligent, inquisitive, funny, lonely, loving, and so much more…
I’m just me…at any age. And that’s really all I can be.