There comes a time when you really get it that there is more behind you than ahead of you.
That whatever you see in the mirror –that probably isn’t what other people see. And sometimes they will tell you in really harsh ways.
That you are never going to be as attractive as you were. That no matter what you do you aren’t going to ever be that attractive again, because that time has passed. Now you need to consider looking ‘good for your age,” or even “great for your age.”
That there will be no more children. Not ever. And crying about that often, so often, doesn’t lessen the pain, that nothing does but time.
That you are now officially old.
That it really isn’t going to get any better. This is as good as it gets. That isn’t such a bad thing necessarily. It isn’t like my life is horrific in any sense. It’s just that the expectations of earlier years don’t match up with what I’m living.
I didn’t think being an adult meant constantly worrying if the ceiling was going to cave in or the floor. I mean that literally and metaphorically.
Somewhere I got the idea that contentment and happiness weren’t the same thing. But at a certain point you get that life isn’t a party, or even often part of a party, that companionship and a general safety and support—that’s the happiness.
But that isn’t what we’re told. We’re told that if we are doing it right we’ll always be passionate about our work, fulfilled and also passionately in love and—while we’re at it we should be amazing at crafting for our kids and their projects while also effortlessly being physically fit.
That’s a huge load of bull.
I didn’t think that having kids meant that in order for them to have a life and be safe in this terrifyingly messed up economy you would have to direct them away from professions that might bring them happiness towards things that will foremost enable them to support themselves. The days of doing like I did—getting my degrees in an arts field, figuring out there were no jobs and that I had a talent elsewhere (computers) and sliding into that—well those days are over. It’s sad but the arts—they are really just disappearing. I would never tell our daughter to get a degree in English.
All I can see right now are how things, like our government, our society, are working much less well than they ever have. How things are crumbling and falling apart—in others, in me, in general. Just crumbling. How there is so much more anger and strife than there was. And it’s sad and scary. I thought this time in my life would be different.
It isn’t the time, it’s me. I have to learn to expect different things, to want different things. To stop wanting many things. To be content I need to look at this time in a completely different way. I guess. Maybe. I don’t know.