Early morning, September 20 and the winds are becoming cool. The leaves have yet to change but the hints of an upcoming season are proof that autumn is in the mail.
There is no real sentiment about now or at least for the moment, as it or was or as it should be. I am awake (of course) and sifting through the million thoughts that keep me awake at night.
However, I am not awake in a bad way. Not at all. Today is somewhat of an anniversary for me. This is the official recognition of my 48th trip around the sun. Or better known as my birthday, or otherwise; this morning is Sunday in the year 2020, which sounds funny to me for some reason.
This is not to say that I never thought I would make it this far. This is not to say that I feel old or that I don’t like my age. No, I suppose this is a moment of realization. It seems like the year 2000 was only yesterday and yet, here we are now. Two decades have gone by in what seems like a blink of an eye.
I am five years past the mornings when Mom would call me. She would call, early as could be, and tell me “Good morning,” and then say, “Happy Birthday.”
Safe to say the festiveness of anything has been muted this year. Safe to say the word “Celebration” is a strange word in light of all that’s happened over the last seven months. Safe to say the new normal is still not normal to me, but still, safe to say that I am here, now, awake at 3:00 a.m. and listening to the sound of my furnace in the basement below me.
Safe to say the number and the age sound odd to me. Safe to say that this age would have been inconceivable to me around 20 years back. And to go forward, then what? What and who will I be in 20 years from now. My hope is to be alive and well and hopefully healthy. I say this with dedication and a sense of importance because there are some goals I have which deserve my attention.
I do not blame my youth for the lack of foresight or insight. I am not sure that insightfulness or foresight was one of my strengths when I was younger.
However, now that I am here, I can say that I have learned what happens when we forget to plan ahead. Hence, the unexpectedness of life. Hence, the unforeseen. Hence, this thing we call maturity and hence, our future, and hence, the here and now and the wherewithal to understand there needs to be a plan if I want to pull off my trick.
If someone asked me then for example; say like, if someone asked me 20 years ago and had someone asked me about my vision for the future, —in short, my answer would have been unsure. My vision was distracted by the illusions of my fears and insecurity. I believed that all of them were real. Plus, the future seemed too far away to think about. Besides, the future is for old people, right?
Had someone asked if I made plans to invest in a 401k or an annuity, I would have shrugged or laughed about because retirement is for old people too, right?
I suppose youth never thinks it will grow old. I suppose I never thought I would grow old either. Perhaps this is why they say youth is wasted on the young. Or, maybe age is only a number and maturity is like awareness, in which case, both things come with time.
It was only a few years back that I decided to make a change in my life. I decided that my plans were important. I decided to switch from being content with mediocrity. I came to the realization that my future is worth the attention.
I learned that time moves quicker than we think. Age moves quicker than we think too and since this can be painfully true; I don’t want the later years of my golden times to be unplanned or ill-prepared.
No, the last few years have been part of a plan to build something and create a place for myself. I want to enjoy the sunsets. I want to watch the sun come up over a place that I plan to build.
I want to see the kids play and hear them laugh in a pasture that I have created for them and know that I had something to do with this.
I want to find somewhere away from everyone and everything and build this idea I’ve had since my 18th birthday.
Three years ago, I was setting goals in three year increments. I created plans and took steps to achieve and improve. Today, I recognize this. I recognize the sun coming up. I can see the sky change. I am allowing myself to plan for the next ten years, or wait, no. Today, I am tasking myself to see ahead to 30 years from now.
What do I want this to look like?
Well, as mentioned, I want to be alive and well, healthy, and able to do things like say, go for a walk and still be active. I want to be healthy, which means I have to care for myself now.
Otherwise, it will be tough to beat the odds. I want to be happy and certainly comfortable, which means I have to invest wisely.
I have to ensure my finances will be strong enough should my health become weak. I have to understand that like it or not, time always moves and age happens to everybody —including the young, and thus, I don’t want to grow old and look back with a taste of regret.
I want to create a plan. I want to task myself and challenge me with the goals of life, such as living beyond my dreams and surpassing my expectations by preparing for a future that deserves my attention.
This is a problem for so many people. They lack a vision for their future. They lack a plan. And then one day, they wake up someplace and wish they made better choices. They wish they had better options.
Such is life I suppose. Such is the shortsightedness of youth. And such is the case for so many, including myself at times. Therefore, effective immediately, I have committed myself to improving my options to the best of my possible ability.
I have tasked myself with three different sets of goals. these begin with my daily, incremental goals that lead up to my short term and eventually direct me to my long term goal.
I know this:
I will make mistakes. I know that I have faults and flaws and areas in need of improvement. I know that I am awake before the world, up early and training for a new life.
I know that although I am not as young as I used to be; I am younger now than I have ever been before.
I know I am only this way because I have made the decision to live my life exactly as I choose. This is something I would have never dared to do when I was young. Hence, this is the reason why I feel younger now than ever before.
Not sure where you are this morning. I know the phone lines can’t reach but I am sending this out to the Universe to let you know that I’m thinking about you.
Tell Pop that I’m doing well. Let him know that I understand more about him and the things he used to say to me.
Tell Pop that I’m learning and improving, which is all anyone can do. Just let him know I’m working at this.
I’m working really hard Mom and hopefully, my work pays off. Hopefully, I get the chance to pull back the curtain to show the world what I’ve been working on and get the chance to say, “Ta-Da!”
I miss you.