I no longer crave drama. Drama is overrated. I prefer to fly under the radar, to be a bit mysterious.
I no longer like the taste of milk chocolate or cheap candy. I will gladly splurge on the pricier dark chocolate from Belgium. No waxy Hershey's for me!
I have fears that I never used to have, like dying on a roller coaster or plane. Or slipping on ice. I am scared of falling. Scared of taking risks. Scared of getting hurt. Most of these new fears arose after I had kids, because I would never want them to grow up without me.
I shrug and whip out my credit card when buying a single $50 sheet or can of paint. I know the value of quality of these things and certain things I will not skimp on. (Yes it still hurts though!) And who runs this conspiracy of $50 sheets and cans of paint anyway??
My fridge is so fully stocked that I must play refrigerator Jenga just to take something out or put it back in again. My bar is fully stocked as well. And not with cheap crap. I have higher standards these days. At 40 you feel like you deserve some class after all the crap you imbibed in your 20's and early 30's. It feels so "grown up" to have fancy glassware and bar tools. We even make fancy ice now! Hunting and gathering at the grocery and liquor stores now excites me, whereas gatherings and hunting for clothes used to.
I know what and who I like and don't like. If I don't like you, I am not going to waste my life spending time with you. Being a people pleaser is no longer me. For my own sanity and inner peace, I come first.
I no longer "worship" sports stars as I once did as a kid because now it feels ridiculous...worship a young punk paid millions to play a game? As my cousin always says, "they don't pay my bills!" Entertainment is one thing, worshipping is another. You won't find me wearing nobody's name on my back!
I have changed. I am more mellow. I usually don't let the small stuff upset me anymore (unless I am tired or overwhelmed). Really, 99.5% is ALL small stuff.
On that note, I have learned to say "no". A humorous yet helpful book I just finished reading is The Life Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck: How to Stop Spending Time You Don't Have with People You Don't Like Doing Things You Don't Want to Do by Sarah Knight. Try it if you need a push off of the proverbial fence.
I demand higher quality, such as no processed foods (goodbye Hot Pockets, Kraft singles, and Pop Tarts) and no dive bars. (OK I still kinda like that 55 cent ramen noodle soup for some reason). I don't "do" cheap liquor in cheap environments anymore.
Nothing seems like "forever" anymore. When I was young, it seemed like "forever" before I would be an adult at 18. Then "forever" again to 21. After that I just couldn't WAIT to be 25 so it would be cheaper for car insurance and if I ever decided to rent a car, I could. Now it seems like every time I look up, it's Christmas again! Another year come and gone!
I have a scar on my shoulder from having a mole removed that used to bother me. I couldn't believe I would have to deal with it FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE. Now I just shrug it off and think whatever! It's all going to be over soon anyway!
I now realize that my time is precious and finite, and I hate wasting it. I look back at the first half of my life and just shake my head in disbelief over all the time I wasted. I was adrift, aimless. It hurts that I thought so little of myself that I never pushed myself. I now set goals and try to achieve them. For me at least, age has brought confidence.
I figure with luck on my side, I still have half of my life to go. Here's to a better second half!
Filed under: getting older