The world is my muse, not my mirror
Age is just a number (to an extent, anyway!). To date, I looked forward to 30, had a couple of months of minor depression shortly after turning 40, and breezed through 50. None of the years between then and now have registered as anything other than just another birthday. So what was the deal with 58?
In its own right, it is a nothing number with an ominous gateway number, looming.
Thanks to the wonders of Facebook, I am now ‘friends’ with more people from my year at school, than I ever was real friends with when I physically attended it. Unlike many parts of the USA, over in England, September 1st is the cutoff date deciding which year kids go to school in, and my birthday is in June. So I see many of my peers who reach my next number months before I get there.
Add to that, my sister, who I adore, and who will forever be so youthful and vibrant in attitude, turned 60 just over 2 months ago. And our young Mum? Turning 80 soon? These numbers are just insane! I can’t grasp them. Can’t say that I’m in denial, as such, but what my mother has said several times over the years, is ringing loud and true.
She would just feel as she always has. She’d then look in the mirror and wonder how on earth she got to her age. She doesn’t feel it, apart from the aches and pains. She doesn’t even know what it means.
And neither do my sister, my cousin Steve who just joined her in the ’60 club’, or I!
How does one act one’s age, when the numbers become this absurd and truly make no sense? To be sure, I eat healthier and less. I have no interest in getting drunk, but apart from a New Year’s Eve party in 2003/4, that has been the case for a very long time. But I still love my music and my Tottenham Hotspur. Can still get very silly and playful. And I’m as passionate as ever if the right button is pushed!
Ultimately, this will turn into a non-event (so far so good). I will get older. There will be ever more people who are younger than me. At some point, I will move from working alongside people who are in some instances younger than my own kids, to belatedly enjoying grandchildren – one of the greatest joys of achieving a larger number.
I don’t see myself as hugely different to the core of who I’ve always been – just a steady evolution. I barely even notice the physical changes. If I stop and really look at myself in the mirror, it is still me that I see. When I am introspective, it is me at my wisest so far. If I was born to teach, I’m simply accumulating more that I can teach!
I love writing! I feel so much happier, having worked through my feelings ‘on paper’, that I had mere minutes ago.
To paraphrase the words of Patrick McGoohan’s Prisoner, “I am not a number”. I am free of that.