I usually tend to associate the number 55 with the speed limit in some places. This year it means a little something different.
On Tuesday the 28th, I am turning 55. I know--I'm not sure how that's possible either! I could swear that it was only a couple of years ago that I was an adorable little kid. Jeez.
|Even then, I was all about the books.|
55 seems to have a kind of "Here there be dragons" feel to it. Mind you, I don't have a problem with getting older. (It sure beats the alternative.) I didn't have a crisis at 50. In fact, I had such an amazing birthday that year, thanks to my incredible friends and the terrific folks at Llewellyn Publishing, I ended up saying, "Gee, if I'd known turning 50 was going to be this great, I would have done it sooner." And this year I'm mostly not doing anything at all except my yearly lunch with friends Ellie and Bobbie (whose birthday is May 1st) and possibly bringing cupcakes to my book signing at Imagicka in nearby Binghamton.
On the other hand, there is something about that number that gives one pause. For instance, in theory, I am ten years away from retirement age. (Feel free to insert hysterical laughter here.) Unless I miraculously become a bestselling author, I will probably never actually be able to retire, but still, I'm suddenly much more focused on getting my financial ducks in a row.
And then there's the body. Oy. I don't so much mind the silver strands in my hair that have, in the last couple of years, become silver streaks. I just tell people it is nature's highlighting, or that I am going blonde one hair at a time. I think I look pretty good for my age (thanks, mom and dad--really appreciate the good genes!), but I'm starting to feel the effects of spending the last few years mostly sitting in a chair in front of a computer. I've been saying for ages that I was going to get back to exercising. Looking 55 in the face seems to have motivated me to actually do so.
Mostly, it makes me think about priorities. Nothing lasts forever. At 55, I have to acknowledge the fact that my parents are getting older. (They're like, 60 now, right? They had me VERY young.) My nieces and my nephew are getting on with their own lives. If I want to spend time with these people, I'd better get around to it.
My maternal grandmother lived to be almost 100--my other grandparents died much younger. Even if I want to take her as the best case scenario, I am now over halfway through my life. That's okay--big huge swaths of the earlier years stunk out loud. I plan to make the rest of them count. Starting with this one.
Mostly I'm just kind of amazed by that number. But hey, it's just the speed limit in some places. Nothing to get all worked up about, right? Please pass the cake...if you dare.
Don't forget to enter my 55th birthday 5 book giveaway HERE -- it's on until Monday the 27th at midnight, EST.