I’m sick. I’m in a foreign country. I feel fragile. The way life, and history, keeps progressing it’s not surprising that I feel fragile, sad, and wistful.
It’s my birthday today. I’ve been looking forward to the new decade all year if I’m honest. The final official marker of middle age is now mine. The childhood yearning to be an adult is now finally satisfied. There is no youth left for me. Only the joyful responsibility of shouldering my burdens.
I’ve never been good at making the safe choices in life. I make choices that are driven by my desire to live a life that makes sense to me. Those choices don’t always make sense to others. I take risks. I suffer their consequences. I pick myself up off the floor. I start over. My regrets are few and my experiences varied and colorful.
I feel proud of where I am in my life. I’ve failed in ways both significant and silly. Any success I’ve had were paid in full by my failures.
I am trembling between excitement and exhaustion at the prospect of the next decade of my life. I have personal and professional goals that are risky. Unlikely even. But I feel as if I must take this new decade upon me with as much energy and momentum as I can muster.
If I do not speed up, then the friction of the world will slow me down. My life is filled with friction. I know the pain of a chronic disease and the curse of Cassandra.
But these are motivating factors for me. I see these risks as worth taking for an interesting life. I hope my next decade is as interesting as my last. And I intend to make the choices required to bring about that outcome.