I have now spent 35 years on this earth.
It sounds like a lot in some ways, but it doesn’t exactly feel like a lot. At least, I don’t wish to have been alive for fewer years.
So many of us are preoccupied with looking young, feeling young. While I don’t care to look or feel particularly old, I do find a lot of satisfaction in feeling like I look just right. Just as I am.
I also find satisfaction in the course of my life. It has required 35 years to get here. I’ll take them. And all the joys and heartaches they’ve brought to make me who I am.
What I’m liking about 35 is that I feel finally have a few things figured out.
- Only you are responsible for your happiness.
- You are not responsible for anyone else’s happiness.
- Taking care of yourself is the greatest gift you can give to the people you love.
- The only thing keeping you from being who you want to be is the decision to do what it takes to be it.
- You need far less stuff than you actually have.
- The best way to make a good meal is to start with good ingredients.
- Worry is the most ineffective and least beneficial expression of love. So much so that you should stop counting it as such.
- Being, living and enjoying life is as great a personal achievement as any.
- Every inch of this planet is covered with something to learn about and better understand.
- None of us is right about everything. Or most things. But that doesn’t mean we’re all wrong, too.
This year my birthday approached with a surge of reminders to simply celebrate another year of life. The surge left a flood of gratitude, for having the opportunities to see magnificent places; for having shared parts of my life with amazing people who are thriving in other parts of the world, or who are no longer a part of this world, or who are fighting to stay in it. To have been in the right time and place for all of it. And to be here, now.