Now ya'll have seen photos of my messy house, got me liquored up in NYC, know my medical secrets, and still read my blog, so I have nothing to hide. Here you go: Why Turning 42 is Awesomer Than I Thought it Would Be:
I received a birthday card from an old friend this morning with a photo of the skyline of Florence, Italy. She wrote, "Remember what you were doing 20 years ago today?" Yes, I do: I had just quit my job in Rome, and I was sitting in a restaurant in Florence with her, celebrating turning the ripe old age of 22. I remember the food we ate (gnocchi), the wine we drank (chianti) and the name of the restaurant (Aqua al due). I remember the hotel we stayed at on the Piazza della Signoria, that we stayed up that night playing a drinking game called Pigs with some other Canadian backpackers until the hotel owner told us to shut up.
It was great fun; I felt so worldly having travelled around Europe, speaking three languages, and I felt like I'd just passed through the most exciting phase of my life. I had that naive notion that adulthood meant stability and a slowing-down of everything, as if my life would begin its inevitable deceleration and I was having my one great last adventure. I pictured life like this, where the X axis is age and the Y axis is some quantitative measure of experiences:
|I grabbed this from Bio-Rad.com rather than try to make my own, but note how the curve decelerates just before 30. Like I thought my life would.|
But there was a whole hell of a lot I didn't know. I didn't know that grownups have exciting lives too. I didn't know that I would go back to grad school at 29 and change jobs. I didn't know that I would do it again at 37. I didn't know that I would do more travelling in my 30s and 40s than in my 20s. I didn't know that "settling down" with a partner doesn't mean that the relationship never changes. I didn't know that having kids would be so difficult and fun and frustrating and loveable and exhausting. I didn't know that there was still so much to learn. I didn't know that I would forever be looking back at my past self and wondering how I could have been so ignorant about things.
Here's to exponential growth with no plateau!
ps: Thanks for reading everybody. Your comments and advice mean a lot to me. Just to show I've been doing some actual Real Life Sewing now that I'm feeling better, here's a taste of what I'm working on: