I’m nearly the same age as the movie Flashdance, MJ’s moonwalk, Cabbage Patch Kids, Reading Rainbow, the song Every Breath You Take by The Police, and Mila Kunis.
In time honored tradition, I write another birthday post for the books. I’m just going to type-scribble this. No formatting. No proper structuring. Just going to spew thoughts on digital paper. Maybe all these writings will be a book one day. Would you buy it? Maybe for my birthday? Kinda wild to think I’m almost 40. Do I buy a convertible Porsche or motorcycle, go to a rave, or get a crazy tattoo?
First things first, what does it feel like to turn 39? Nothing. I feel like nothing major has occurred that has me feeling some type of way compared to last year. Here’s what’s going on:
Mentally Just carry over of dealing with family health issues. I felt exhausted the year before. Being a caretaker, driver, translator, dietician, adult nanny, cleaner which now feels like just part of a job. So this was normalcy. No added stress that I’m conscious of. I’m less patient but more at the same time. I’m less patient humoring people on nonsense but I’m more patient teaching and listening to those who are willing. Someone pointed out I do that thing where I put my hands behind my back and lean into looking at things like a 75 year old Asian man at a teapot museum.
Physically This past year I recall having more physical pain and ailments than ever. It started with catching Covid last summer and I guess it just triggered all the unhealthy parts of me because up until that point, my body could get through anything. My body was throwing out an array of symptoms with no known pattern every now and then. Not great but still alive! I’m aiming to workout this year. The Apple Watch is great because it’s sort of holding me accountable to not be a complete lazy sack of shit sitting in front of a computer.
Dating This is one area I definitely realize I am maturing for the better. As a young teen I believed love was to simply have the same interests, birth dates, or gushing at first sight. The contrast now being nearly 40 and coming out of a few good relationships in my 30’s, I learned love can come from unexpected connections that give us purpose. While my view of basic attraction has changed, the introspective work has refined how I offer affection. Nick Offerman said it best, “We spend far too little time showing basic affection. If no one shows you love, you begin to feel unloved”
Financially It has been six months in my current contract role. I understand the appeal in project-based work. The pace and change in environment is incredibly dynamic. Reminds me of the days I was a straight commission sales rep. Just when I think I’ve grow up to be more responsible with money, I suddenly splurge in a way that remind me I am not. Yet somehow I don’t regret it, and that’s mildly concerning because I should be afraid to spend so carelessly.
Career I’ve been pretty vocal about my sentiments in my current role. The work isn’t terrible and I work with good people for the most part. I’m learning but I wish I served a better purpose than just making a group of rich folks richer. I think my Gen Z team is rubbing off on me. I don’t know. We will see how things shake out.
Final Thoughts I often get asked, “Why aren’t you a birthday person?” Birthdays are actually very special to me. I’ve had parties and large gatherings thrown for me and they were all amazing. However, the best memories will forever be with my grandma and our intimate birthdays together in our rickety apartment. Each birthday, she would buy an entire chicken leg as a gift and it would be just for me. No sharing as we normally would have to. That would be it. I can’t explain how amazing this feeling was. I’ve talked about this a while ago in a social media post. To this day, I carried the tradition to eat a chicken leg for my birthday. So all birthdays feel like just another day.
However if anyone is feeling inclined to really make my birthday memorable, I won’t decline any of the following gifts: