We all have that one birthday number that we just don’t like… Well, I am hitting mine this weekend. Fifty-Five…. I didn’t know what it is about that number, but it’s just was not my favorite.
Looking back, I remember thirty, that was also not my favorite number. There was something about thirty, the not being in my twenties that I wasn’t crazy about, but it passed quickly and I got over that fast.
Speaking with my friends, many didn’t like turning fifty. I personally celebrated Fabulous Fifty. I was exactly where I wanted to be in life. I was in excellent physical shape and had the world by the proverbial ass.
This big number, fifty-five, has been dragging on for months and I have been dreading this number. Who knew that turning fifty-five would come with so many challenges and questions.
I have now figured out why the number was such a big deal.
In preparation for fifty-five, I did what I am guessing is what many people start doing, planning for retirement. It’s ten years to retirement. That is exciting, and also kind of scary.
I have spent many of days, looking at numbers. You know those numbers, what do you owe? What do you have invested? How long before the mortgage is paid off? What will our pension be like? And are we going to be OK for the retirement we are hoping for?
The answer to that is yes, we are going to be just fine, as long as nothing else changes.
But, change is something we have seen a lot of over the last five years, since I was fifty and I had the world by the proverbial ass. As much as we know that we are both doing fine with these health conditions, you say you are fine, but in the back of your head, there is that little voice that says, anything can happen and has.
This fifty-five, is a funny number. I found it to be the soul-searching age.
At fifty-five, you know who you are. You know what job you are basically going to do for the rest of your career. You know what matters and what doesn’t. You also know, who matters and who don’t.
I have found with most of my friends who have reached this age, we just don’t mesh our words and we know the difference between when to pick our battles and when not to.
I have also learned by talking to many, that this time of confidence, is also a time of self doubt.
The worries are the same, we have to start watching our health, taking more time to rest and we all start worrying and planning for retirement.
It’s also a time to start doing all those things that you said you where going to do, because at fifty five, you realize that your life is more that half over. Yes, mortality does come into the picture.
What else comes into thought at fifty-five? You start looking around you.
I am watching my friends, going through their parents aging and loosing them. Realizing that I did this at a younger age, I see their worries and remember the pain.
I also watch them celebrate having grandchildren, and I share their enjoyment of them, when they come to the Love Shack.
I am also a proud mom, and am grateful at having my children being successful and independent, but mostly that they have turned out to be good people.
I am blessed with the friendships we have. Life would not be the same without our Weekend Warriors.
I have a career that as allowed me to grow as a person.
And then there is husband, who is perfectly imperfect. I would be lost without him.
So in general, life so far has been good and this fifty-five, really isn’t so awful.
On the humors side of it, I received a letter in the mail, celebrating my fifty-fifth birthday. I now get a Seniors Discount at the drug store I use… Woo Hoo…
The doctor’s office called, reminding me that my physical is do and it’s time for my mammogram, and the Motor Vehicle Department sent me my renewal bill for my plates for my car.
Then, Mother Nature showed up, reminding me to slow down, and just in case I forgot, she gave me sinusitis and bronchitis.
It’s nice to know, my birthday was remembered.
I hadn’t really planned on celebrating this birthday. I was planning to work on my birthday and not tell anyone it was my birthday, letting this one kind of slip by quietly. Instead, I get to stay home and use my first discount at the drug store.
I am fifty-five. Ten more years to retirement. That leaves a whole new kind of thought. I guess I can officially start retirement planning and look forward to sixty-five.
Happy Fifty-Five, to Me.