I blinked and now I’m thirty.
I have wanted to be in my thirties since I was eighteen—what do you think that says about me? It tells me that I’m always wanting the next, best thing to happen instead of appreciating what I have. Personally, I think it makes me impatient. Above all else, I think it shows just exactly how I viewed myself: older, mature, and tired of the shit of my peers. But what eighteen year old doesn’t feel morally and logistically superior to his peers?
Now that I’m so close, though, it all feels a little too good to be true. It’s almost like coming out: you build up this idea in your head of what it’s going to be like; you imagine the tears and relief of getting the words out their in the open, you brace yourself for questions and possible backlash, and then once you do it—the reality never matches up with the expectations.
I am now less than a week away from my birthday, and so much of it feels mundane. Aside from planning out my kamayan feast dinner (and by planning, I mean stressing), I am too focused on work and making sure Gendry doesn’t scratch the couch to even focus on being in the moment. Even this blog, at some points, felt more like a chore than an introspective retrospective on the last decade of my life—not that I haven’t enjoyed the exercise, but even this fell into the trappings of routine.
So, after all this time, where did the excitement go? I blinked and now I’m thirty? That’s it? Have I not been paying attention to the last ten years? Have I been so concerned with reaching this milestone that I ignored everything else and pushed through to the mountaintop? Have I cared more about the destination than the journey? Are you tired of these metaphorical, rhetorical questions yet?
That’s usually the way, though, isn’t it? It’s why the cliches exist:
“Be in the now.”
“Appreciate the present.”
“See what’s in front of you.”
It’s because we already don’t, so we have to remind ourselves why we should—and I’ve been doing a piss-poor job of that ever since I was eighteen, it seems. I want to be better at that in these next years. I want to know that while I have a life waiting for me in another decade, I still have a life worth living right in front of me—one worthy of my time.