45 Minutes

Photo of me in CK in Tree Pose by our loving and patient personal trainer Sara Madsen

I have forty five...forty four minutes for writing today and I would like to write about 120 things. I'd like to write about middle age and how it comes at you like a train wreck--fast and relentless. It feels like someone is giving you your adolescence to do over, except this time you're an adult and you have better tools and more confidence to combat the blows to your self-worth. Isn't that sort of beautiful when you think about it? If you failed yourself when you were a young adult (which we all did, really), you get another chance to become a hero when you're a middle aged adult.

I mean, if you've learned anything at all.

And it's really not that we failed ourselves as young adults, it's that we didn't have the brain structure to see that we were doing JUST FINE. That when we faced ourselves--the person we were becoming--we were scared, and a lot of us ran away from what was forming in the mirror. But here in middle age we are returning back to that mirror, which is gift, and we're saying, what we were so afraid of? This person I am is fine. This body I have is good. My thoughts about life are beautiful. My intuition is right. I have value in being unabashedly me. I am complete. 

Or we look in the mirror and keep running. And now get why people do that. Makes total sense.

Because it also seems that in middle age you have to come to terms with your baggage. Do you want to carry that stuff for the next phase of your existence? If not, what will you leave behind? I think those brutally heavy middle age crises are the kindest thing we do for ourselves. We give ourselves a second chance at making the life we need for ourselves. Somewhere in our past we decided that right around middle age our brains were going to need to slough off some brain power to boost on to the next phase. Isn't that cool?

I had a morning chat with a therapist today about what I am going to try and leave behind on my journey up the age ladder. Or what I will refashion into something that doesn't feel so heavy. I know I have been holding on to a suitcase labeled VALIDATION OBSESSION that probably needs to go. Or least I need to take a whole hell of a lot of contents out of it so that it shrinks and becomes something manageable. I mean, we all want validation. RIGHT?!

(Did you catch what I did there?)

I have just spilled a lot of brain guts here and it's only been 9 minutes.

But seriously, if you are reading this right now and you are in your early thirties or younger, just know your second adolescence awaits you and you should probably line up a therapist and a bunch of really great friends and a stockpile of whatever you need to get you through to the next phase (be it Prozac or a Yoga Trainer or Tarot Cards or Vodka I am not judging)(or, in other words, basically all the things you didn't have the first time you went through this) and live up the last few drops of your remaining pre-mid-life crisis life.

And if you are reading this right now and you've navigated your way through a mid-life crisis, FOR THE LOVE OF EVERYTHING HOLY drop me a line and tell me what is next. You owe this to me, you do. Because you didn't warn me about this weird spot in our human evolution. You didn't tell me about looking at the stars and freaking out about death. You didn't tell me about the second wave of sexuality that storms in all hungry and thirsty and judging you for abandoning parts of yourself that you didn't even know existed. You should have sat me down and said, you will do things you never saw coming for validation you never knew you craved so badly.

You should've warned me, at the very least, that life is one hell of a surprise.

And now my 45 minutes are up.

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