The Age of…

Sometimes, the extraordinary is in the mundane.

I am young.  Finishing my bachelor’s degree in just three years.  Being awarded accolades; moving across the country with my tall, dark, and handsome boyfriend.  I am going to a top law school.

But I still wear waterproof, smudgeproof make-up to bed, because I am afraid of being Seen.

amillionyearsago

I look at the photos now, and I can hardly believe I was ever so young.

Life goes on.

And then one day, a million years later, I am getting ready for bed, and I vaguely recall that there is a photo of me in the exact same nightclothes.  I have seen it recently, even.

And I marvel at what a difference 12, 13 years makes.

present day

I don’t wear makeup to bed anymore.

I recount the story of seeing my younger and older selves to someone the next day — how getting older seems so extraordinary while it’s happening, but when one sees one’s selves side-by-side, one becomes painfully aware that ageing is utterly mundane.

Youth is wasted on the young.

We talk and we talk.  We talk about who we are; where we are.  Where we expected to be.  How we got to the places we are.  The overarching theme seems to be: When you know, you know.

Everyone says that.

But what do we know?

Here’s what I know:

I know that I make a better thirtysomething than I did twentysomething;

I know that I am stronger than I think I am;

I know that the completely extraordinary moments are often the most ordinary ones.

And oh my.  How those gorgeously ordinary moments have been extraordinary!  When I look at my ageing self, I recall how I remember and cherish each hello and goodbye.  How each everyday conversation takes on new meaning simply because it exists.

Do you appreciate the people you love?

I also know that while I have long ago outgrown the need to sleep in my makeup, so long as I am able, I don’t think I will ever fail to put on a little mascara and lipgloss before heading to the Emergency Room.

5 Comments

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  1. You are going to be so fricking incredible when you hit your mid-40’s. Shame you have to wait so long. 🙂 Enjoy the time between now and then. It will go quickly.

  2. I’m turning 30 on Monday. And I’ve been stuck in reflecting on how much I haven’t changed since 25. But this post? Made me realize that it’s time to start looking at both the things that haven’t changed and the things that have. So thank you for a beautiful birthday present you didn’t know you were giving me.

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