Birthday Musings: Loving Life at Every Age

Me: My birthday is next week.

4 Year Old: How old will you be?

Me: How old do you think I’m going to be?

4 Year Old: 17!

Me: *confused, a hint of a giggle*

Oh, bless your little heart! Lol.

This was the convo that I had with one of my 4 year old cutie pies at church last week. I’ll take it! I’m clearly not 17 but if that’s what a 4 year old thinks is old, I’ll be 17.

Never does anyone guess my real age (for the record I turned 38 on March 29th). And I love it! I kind of make it into a game trying to see who can get closest (they never go over). I can thank the Lord and my parents for these good genes. Although it will one day, age hasn’t caught up with me just yet.

But, I absolutely love the age, stage and phase of live I’m in. I’ve always been the type of person to enjoy my current situation, making the absolute best of the season of live I was in. In my 20s I navigated the awkwardness of finding my way in the world on my own terms, outgrowing the safety net of mom and dad, balancing the freedom of doing what I want, when I want with the obligations of a professional career. In my early 30s I exuded the confidence that comes from stability, settled-ness, responsibility and life lessons. Now, as I journey through my late 30s, quickly approaching my 40s, what am I most looking forward to? What scares me? What excites me?

I am most looking forward to continuing to live fully, with no regrets in this current season. My life is good! It isn’t perfect. But it is good, definitely one filled with blessings and joy. I do work I enjoy. I have a lot of freedom, flexibility and opportunity to pursue various passions. Yes, it is a good life!

I am a huge dreamer. Since I was little, I’d cook up these little plots. They usually involved planning some elaborate event, re-imagining my wardrobe with only the contents of the closets in my house to pull from (yes, during my tomboy years I raided my dad’s closet once or twice – don’t ask…) or composing poetry in my diary. Even now I dream. Of what? Mainly creating experiences. Although I have many introverted tendencies, entertaining and extending hospitality give me life. A bit of it comes from the planner in me that looks for any opportunity to be unleashed. But its also the hunger for community, family and being able to connect others.

So what are my dreams, hopes, prayers for this year and beyond?

1. Travel: I don’t travel nearly enough. There are so many places to see and adventures to embark upon. Why haven’t I been? Nowhere is really calling my name. And that’s sad, in my opinion. Also, I’ve fed into the lie of “I can’t take vacation. Too much work to do.” As an HR professional, I’m the first person to tell a co-worker to “Go!” All that work isn’t going anywhere. It will be here when you get back. But for myself, its a little harder to embrace.

*Point of Clarification: I am a big “stay-cation” junkie and been taking advantage of that tactic for years. But it’s time to discover some new terrain. Places that only a plane can take me.

2. Kids: I love them! They are such a joy to be around. Like on Sunday mornings from 9:30 am – 12:15 pm. Or at weekly basketball games. During a special outing to the movies, bounce place or the park. I absolutely LOVE my role as “auntie” and “adult friend” to so many kids. It is a privilege to be able to love and invest in their lives and come alongside their parents as a positive adult influence. It truly brings me joy! But raising my own? Not sure I’m overly interested in that. At least not now. But every now and then, when I look at my license (and not the mirror), and remember how old I really am, a moment of panic comes over me. “Krystal, you need to decide if you want to have kids.” Its just a moment, thankfully. But, I gave myself this year to figure it out. I don’t feel like I HAVE to figure it out but I will devote some thought to it.
But overall, I’m just so glad I have the opportunity to be in the lives of a variety of kids (even those that I taught in my awkward 20s that are now having little ones of their own).

3. Never Stop Learning: I am addicted (is that too strong a word?!) to learning. The excitement that comes from finding out about something new (even when not presented very well) is something else. The exhilaration of filing a new thought or idea into my brain – heaven! I’m not real sure what I’m going to learn this year (maybe figuring out this self-publishing thing or “How to be a Landlord 101”). But I’m positive it will be a wonderful adventure.

So, as I continue birthday celebrations over the next few days (doesn’t everyone extend birthdays past the actual day they were born???), I will remain thankful for this season of life. I will look forward with great anticipation to the experiences that lie ahead during this 38th year of living – travel to at least one new international destination, enjoying time with the kids that I’m blessed to be able to invest in and new knowledge just waiting for a hungry mind like mine.

Your birthday may be months from now. Or, maybe it already passed. No matter! What are a few things you are enjoying during this current season of your life?