And so, it begins. My peers and I have begun the chant that sets the tone for our old age. “I’m too old for this”, “I can’t do that anymore”, “My knees hurt” and so on. As our children become the ages we still feel we should be, there’s a sense that our time has passed and it is their turn. Our bodies are beginning to display signs that maybe, just maybe, we’ve been around for a little while and have done a few things.
“I can’t” and “I don’t like” are the comforting calls of middle age. The privilege of adulthood allots us the opportunity to say “no thanks” at every turn. Comfort and ease are what we seek. Run out through the wet grass to pick something from the garden, uh no thanks! Get up early to volunteer at that 5K, Pass! Enroll in a class at the local community college, been there, done that! What’s the result? Our world begins to shrink in the most subtle of ways.
My little baby sister (she’s 43) recently pierced her upper ear and sent me pictorial proof of this display of her “midlife crisis”.
“Can’t we call this midlife curiosity?” I asked. We agreed. I went and got a tattoo.
Curiosity (noun) A strong desire to know or learn something, A strange or unusual object or fact. Synonyms: peculiarity, oddity, strangeness, oddness. Middle age feels like all of those things, smashed into a ball of business and confusion of how this came to pass. As the kids graduate and our careers shift , hopefully our desire to know and learn something becomes stronger.
Don’t rest on the laurels of your #hardcoreadulting and get out there and explore. Remain curious about learning and life. Find awe in the littlest of things. Reflect on what brought you joy as a child, and jump on a bike, take a ballet class, join a book club. Most importantly stay active! As we tip toe into our “golden years” we lose sight of what we want those years to actually look like. Keep moving and stay curious. Trust me, your future self will certainly thank you.