Quick note: I may or may not be back. I just needed somewhere to put this. We'll see how it goes.
In less than 5 minutes, I will have been on this earth for 40 years.
I hadn't really though all that much about turning 40 until this weekend. It certainly wasn't something that had preoccupied me as it does some people. But getting to that milestone certain makes one think. Over the past day or two, I've been thinking a lot about my life, especially the last half of it (the last 20 years). So much about me has changed, and it's amazing to think about how few memories I have of my first 20 years, but how vivid my memories are of the last 20.
It's surreal to me to think that things I remember happening as if they were yesterday are already 20 years in the past.
I still judge time by how it felt when I was a kid. When I was in high school, "40 years ago" was the time at the end of World War II, and there had been two other wars in the interim. Now, 40 years ago is the time of Vietnam, and again, there have been two wars in the interim. Black and white versus color has changed to film versus digital. It makes you realize just how short this life we live is.
My 20's were so full of change...finishing school, getting my first real job, quitting that job for a better job, living completely on my own for the first time, getting engaged, then breaking it off (more than once) making decisions that would change the course of my life. All of those things happened 10-20 years ago.
The past 10 years has been full of more adult decisions. Going to grad school, quitting a job that was making my life hell, moving back to Texas, getting married, having children, stopping having children, not taking a better job because of how it would impact my family.
What will the next 10 years hold? The next 20? All I know is that I'll be looking back at it all in 2032 wondering where all the time went.
When you're young, you don't dwell on these things. Life seems like it will go on forever. It's only when you hit a milestone like this that you're forced to face your own mortality.
No wonder people have mid-life crises.