Full disclosure….I’m going to celebrate my 50th birthday next month. The interesting thing is that I really am “ok” with it. Actually I said full disclosure…and that’s a lie. I’m not really “ok” with it. In reality, I’m pumped about it! Yes you read that right. I am excited to become a half Centenarian!
And my openness to the big 5-0 doesn’t really make me unique. What’s interesting is that while a few decades ago, folks “my age” would spend their time reflecting on the "hills" they climbed and their memories….with longer life expectancies, today’s 50 year olds are busily planning what "hill" to climb next!
As I see it, I’m entering the phase of my life where my kids are raised (and doing quite well!) If desired, retirement looms in the not too distant future. While admittedly it takes me a little while to move pain-free in the morning, compared to the plights of so many others my health is great. I’m blessed with more wonderful friends than I have time to enjoy. I couldn’t be happier with how things are going with my career. And I have plans to take many more “hills” in my lifetime.
Yes, life at 50 is good for many, many reasons, but here are just a few:
- Hear me ROAR. I think confidence is one of the best things about 50. Confidence to be proud of my accomplishments, failures and life in general! And it’s something I certainly didn’t have on my 25th birthday. At 25, I wasn’t happy with my career (but not smart enough to realize that) and I thought the world was OVER! Funny at the time, a quarter of a century old seemed ancient…now a half of century feels like I’m just getting things going. It’s all about perspective and confidence!
- Weathered the Storms. Admittedly life can be challenging. And while none of us ever know what’s around the corner, there’s something calming about knowing that I’ve handled everything so far. Not always easily. And not always with the grace and style I would have liked…but I’ve gotten through. Interestingly enough, I’ve also learned that sometimes these “storms” help me grow, learn and become better so that I’m ready for my next venture.
- 50 isn’t old. For all my young millennial readers, you may disagree with the concept that 50 isn’t old….but I’m quite sure boomers everywhere would agree that we aren’t anywhere near done. It’s actually quite interesting. As a kid, I thought 50 and old age were synonymous. Now that I’m there, it seems there is A LOT of living left to be done on the other side.
- So Much Smarter. As I look back at the things that robbed me of sleep over the last two or three decades, I’m embarrassed. At my new ripe age of 50, I realize that many of the small things I stressed about in my 20-30’s were a waste of time and energy. Maturity definitely has a calming effect and offers great ability to put things into proper perspective.
- Parenting done! Look I absolutely loved every day of being a parent and to this day my daughter is truly one of my best friends, but it’s admittedly hard work…both physically and emotionally. At 50, it’s time to reap the rewards of my work and marvel at what a really cool (and successful) independent person I helped shape.
- The S-E-X gets better. For years, chatter has been all about the “sexual prime.” That’s the concept that men reach their sexual peak at 18 and women at 30. Seriously?!? Perhaps I’m just in denial, but I refuse to believe that. And I’m not alone. Instead, experts now credit confidence, increased intelligence and overall satisfaction with life as key contributors to a great sex life. Hello....all of which come with age. Of course it doesn’t hurt that the kids have finally moved out and the parents have yet to move in!
So bring on the "Over the Hill" signs and black balloons to my 50th birthday party….I’m feeling pretty fab at 50!
If you've turned 50, what "hills" do you have planned for the second half of your life?