The Daily Man-Up

August 22, 2018 | No Comments » | Topics: Man-Up

(photo: @wadeaustinellis)

I keep hearing about “adulting” and how hard it is. Well, it is hard and doesn’t get easier.

At almost 60, I still get scared, overwhelmed and don’t know what to do sometimes. I still have sleepless nights and wonder what the hell I’m going to do about some situations. The difference is I can use my experience in prior situations to assess the current one. Or, even better, I have a circle of family/friends/professionals that I can go to for advice. Ones that I trust, not the one on the next barstool or such.

But inside, I still feel like I’m 25! I like splashing in puddles, I sit in awe of a star-filled sky, I blow bubbles even when I’m not with the grandkids. I love shopping for new and different clothes in out of the way places, I still travel alone to places that interest me. I love to cook and try new things. I stay out late and sleep in sometimes, just not every weekend lol. I take up new hobbies and endeavors because they seem interesting. I still reach out to strangers and make new friends, so that I don’t get bored. And I LOVE a good whisky and the occasional drunk!

Everyone thinks there is a magic age when you feel mature. It’s not true. As you get older you get more responsible and you learn how to deal with difficult things because you’ve learned. You’ve learned consequences of being irresponsible suck, you’ve learned to deal with difficult things because NOT dealing with them is more harsh in the long run.

Yeah, ‘adulting’ is hard and not fun plenty of times. But being irreverant, immature and irresponsible is a lot harder, a lot harsher and very damaging. It makes a happy life just about impossible.

All told, I’m very happy to be looking at my 60th birthday coming up! I’ve had a wonderful and interesting life full of amazing people and places. I’ve worked extremely hard to get where I am in life and I am enjoying every minute of it!

My children are grown and I now have the time AND the money to do just about anything that interests or intrigues me. I am not wealthy, I am comfortable.

But that didn’t happen magically, nor was it inherited or handed to me. It took planning and diligence. At times, it took a great deal of sacrifice and pain. During the recession I almost lost everything and I lived in a lot of fear during that time. But I had already learned how to handle things. It took learning to know what was a need vs want, it took learning to save and learning to invest. I could have a fancy new car, or I could take that money and do something smart with it and settle for a really decent car. I could rack up credit card debt that would take ten years to pay back for a trip to Europe for a month, or I could travel when I could afford it, make the trips smaller, and use hostels, mid range hotels, campgrounds, etc. There is no need to go dirt cheap unless you need to, but no need to create debt, for the same reason. So, in spite of the recession, I survived those tough financial times because I wasn’t carrying massive debt for fancy, expensive wants. So I could focus my financial survival on what was within my means.

I’ve had fabulous experiences and travels and memories. I wouldn’t trade it for anything! Life has been good to me, but it didn’t happen without me preparing for it to be so. I’ve had some extreme difficulties, some serious challenges and a lot of tragedy in my life too, so it hasn’t been sunshine and roses. Life never is. But it didn’t make me lose focus, it didn’t take me to the bottom, and it didn’t cause me to burn bridges. I went through all of them, from the death of one child, through the mental health issues of another, and came out the other end a different person, but still one who finds a great deal of joy in life, rather than wallowing in the dark side of it.

I hope everyone feels this way when looking at their older years!

– amour_columbe

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