What 42 Looks Like

This is what 42 looks like.

42.  That number blows my mind, I'm not going to lie. When I was younger ... A LOT younger, I looked at 42 as an age of wisdom and maturity and, well, of being old.

And now I am there.  

I don't feel like I've gained any wisdom ... 

Or maturity ...

I do feel old ... sometimes.  Like right now.  My bad knee aches.  I sound old when I refer to my "bad" knee as such ... Okay, so maybe I am old.

It just boggles my mind that 20 years have passed so quickly.  I remember being 22 ... vaguely.  It was a year of so many changes, chiefly graduating from college. And I remember thinking that I couldn't fathom 20 years into the future.  I had plans, for sure, but to see the future? I just couldn't do it.  I had some ideas of what 20 years would look like.

I figured it would look like me ... 

With a corporate career
Living in a nice house
Taking fun, possibly exotic vacations
Saving for early retirement
Fit and able to wear a bikini (okay, this is more of a day dream ...)

That isn't what 42 looks like, however. 

I am not married.  Mr. Right eludes me.
I am a teacher.  The job is hard and very rarely makes me feel uplifted.
I do live in a nice house ... one that I AM paying for ... on my own.  A small point of pride, I will admit. 
I do not take fun, exotic vacations.  I don't have the money for such things.
I have no money for early retirement.  In fact, I am probably going to be retiring after all of my peers. 
I am no where near fit or able to wear a bikini.  No one would want to see that.

Still, 42 looks like a confident woman who has managed to carve out an existence for her and her spoiled feline without a lot of help from any one person.  42 looks like fine lines and achy muscles and dreams and wishes and hopes and smiles and tears and anger and pain and all those things and more things.  

42 looks vastly different from 22, and for that, I am grateful.

Here's hoping 42 will be my best year yet!


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