I am going to be 40 this year.
I THINK I am supposed to be having some kind of crisis, but I am not….I don’t think, anyway.
Maybe I do examine and spot the flaws in the mirror more than usual. Maybe the flaws are just a bit more noticeable… The upside of that is that I seem more chilled and philosophical about the whole thing and everything, than I once did. I even celebrate the good bits.
I have decided on a change of haircut…and a TATTOO!!
The haircut is because, I grow my hair, change it’s colour, then ruin my hair – then cut my hair.
Then I begin again.
The tattoo is because, I never thought I would like something long enough to not change my mind and wish I had chosen something else. And I keep seeing cracking ones on other people.
I know now that it doesn’t matter if I do change my mind, it will be a reminder of 40 year old me.
Forever doesn’t seem to be as long as I once thought…
Also, I spend a lot of my time teaching with a cropped top on – so decorating the bits that show seems ok. And I have been absent-mindedly choosing one for ages.
That is my defence, your honour…
So what is that all about, then?
New Year is always catalyst for change.
We get a bit of time to think, be with our families, take stock and plan for the New Year. It’s the extra thinking time that does it. We often don’t have much of that, normally. Days are too busy, then the TV beckons if we’re lucky.
Birthdays are the same, and ones with an ‘0’ on the end are even more so.
Bereavements, Marriages, New Babies, Promotions, Divorces, Anniversaries…Haircuts…Tattoos…..Milestones. Moments marked with photos and gatherings when those people that are there at those gatherings…are gathered. The very presence of that particular group can strike up old memories. Bound to, really.
These form the contents page of our lives, often with a ping of reflection on time that could have been better spent or a future planned differently. Dead wood cleared… Important bonds reinforced.
Reflection is a useful tool, and weirdly most of us rebel against it and find a thousand other things to do when it starts to kick in.
But when thinking time is enforced, big things happen.
You start to realise, and decide and work out what it is that is most important. What burns. Or maybe that nothing does any more, which is possibly the more difficult problem.
What you can’t go for a day without thinking about? Where does your mind drift when it should be busy doing tax returns and Sainsbury’s shops. Where would it like to?
Please, for me – write down 3 things that you would like to have more of in your life. Those things that play on your mind, you find yourself Googling for no proper reason, or photos you dig out, just because.
Could it be seeing a particular person, doing something, being somewhere? Write down next to each or the three, when you can next see them or do it or go there. An action plan rather than a daydream.
Then put it on the calendar.
No need to wait for a milestone – those are coming anyway, and I have a haircut to have, and a tattoo to bottle out of twice before I finally get it done, so I will be too busy to remind you.
Have a great week.