On any given day of the week, you can hear someone say, "It's coming, my BIG day is coming", 'Whether they continue to say, "it's my 21st, my 30th, 40th 0r 50th birthday, it all comes with a lot of excitement and also a bit of nervousness about the journey ahead. Face it, we don't know what to expect. All we know is what we have heard from others. Regardless of how each story ends, good or bad, it's all about change. Everyone knows that change is inevitable, so we may as well embrace it.
It all begins with age 21. I will call it, "Single and Ready to Mingle". Everyone who has ever lived has waited anxiously for the BIG 21 to come around. Twenty-One means that you are legal. You are able to drink, you are unofficially "grown". Most of us know that simply reaching the age of twenty-one has never made anyone grown, they just think that they are. If you can remember back to that day, you will remember that you didn't have a care in the world. You went to work or school because you could, not because you had to. Most of the planning in your life was centered around what to do on the weekend.
"Grown and Sexy" is what I call thirty. At thirty your focus turns to being grown. It's officially time to move away from your parents and venture out into the world and make your own way. Most of your time during this decade is spent proving to everyone how grown and responsible you really are.
Forty begins the "It's the new thirty" phase . I will call it "Flirty Forty". Forty is when you emphasize how young you really are. At Forty, you begin to think about the future. Reality hits you and you realize that you might not live forever. It's the first time that you REALLY feel that you need life insurance. Sure, you had it in your thirties, but you didn't need it. You will wake up one morning and suddenly, you need glasses? Life becomes about your vision. Not your personal vision for your life, but your ability to see. During this decade you find yourself coming into your own. You are suddenly introspective. You emerge as a deep, thinking and learning individual. You find yourself quoting the Dalai Lama and Mother Theresa. You want to hold conversations with people that you don't even know, about things that you never really cared about. You begin to understand yourself and you know who you are even if others don't get it. The beauty of it is that you don't care because in your mind, you are the coolest forty year old walking the planet. You feel like more people ought to be like you. At least, this is what I've heard.
And then there was, fifty. People seem to be excited about still being alive. Fifty is the new forty, of course! It is the "Fabulous Fifties", from what they tell me. You have become accomplished in your career. Your life is on track or on the way to being on track. It's amazing how many people are telling me that they will be fifty this year. Who Knew? I can't imagine why they keep telling me this, when they know that I am still in the "grown and sexy" phase. How can I commiserate with a fifty year old? In an effort to not offend, I play along. I don't know anything about being 50. However, I have heard that people at age fifty spend little time worrying about what people think. They spend more time focusing on who they are and what they think. This carried forward from the flirty forty phase.
At fifty, or so I hear, you are okay with who you are and people can take you or leave you. It's the "It is what it is and it ain't what it ain't phase. Maybe by this point, you figure this "life" thing out. At least, you figure out that worrying about it wont help. I have heard that you begin to forget what you are saying...mid-sentence. It's also been said that you are approaching or at the top of the proverbial hill and there is no where to go but down from there.
If I was one of the people approaching fifty, I think I would accept it with style and grace. I would continue to be my authentic self. Everyone won't like me but who cares, I sure do. I think I would continue to flutter through life like a butterfly, ever changing and ever growing. If I had fifty staring me in the face, I would probably begin to appreciate each day and not be afraid to share my gratitude with others. Hmmm.. If I was going to be fifty any time soon, I would...um...I would. Oh, I lost my thought and I am having difficulty seeing my screen. Anywho, to all of you turning fifty this year, embrace it! Take every opportunity to get things right or as right as right can be. Emerge as the person you've wanted to be all of these years. You are so close...GRAB it!
Change is a good thing, in the end. It may not feel like it in the moment. We, as humans become comfortable with the status quo. It's easy. Challenge the Easy Button! Easy is not always best.
If you are fifty, you probably watched the Brady Brunch at some point in your life. You might remember Peter when his voice started changing. I think he said it best, "When it's time to change, you have to rearrange."
Autumn turns to winter
And winter turns to spring
It doesn't go just for seasons you know
It goes for everything
The same is true for voices
When boys begin to grow
You gotta take a lesson from Mother Nature
And if you do you'll know
When it's time to change (when it's time to change)
Don't fight the tide, go along for the ride
Don't ya see
When it's time to change, you've got to rearrange
Who you are and what you're gonna be
If I were fifty, I would do some rearranging. I am not fifty...but check back with me in August!