March 5, 2018

At the time of this writing, I will have been alive for 38 years, 11 months, 5 days and 3 hours.

I think.

Honestly, I’m not sure if that math is right.

But an easier way to look at it is that I’ve been alive for nearly 14,235 days.

“That’s it?” I said outloud to my empty house.

It does not feel like it’s been that long. It feels a lot longer.

At the time of this writing, at about 10:20 p.m. Pacific Standard Time, March 5, 2018, in about 21 hours (figuring in the time difference for living on the West Coast, but being born in Louisville, Kentucky at 10:09 p.m. on March 6, 1979), I will turn 39.

As the day worn on today, the thought of the ticker turning became a bit more… heavy. I don’t know why. Maybe because Sarah, my work sister, is leaving this week. Maybe because it’s been blah and gray here lately and definitely the time of year when cabin fever and the gray hits me (and the rest of the northwest) pretty hard. Also, Monday.

I also get kinda glum around my birthday, especially if I don’t have something planned. And I don’t really.

Well, that’s not necessarily true. I always try and plan something on the weekend closest to my birthday, whether it’s a long getaway or just a one-day event. KG indulged me on Sunday and went with me to Musselfest in Coupeville, where we sampled 8 types of mussel chowder, did a fair sampling of the wine beer and garden, ate our way through the Paella and BBQ food trucks, tried to get on a boat to see a mussel farm, and then drove alllll the way back around to the mainland, with a stop at the Skagit Valley Co-op for our weekly groceries, before popping on to the Kingston-Edmonds Ferry and zipping back down to Bremerton.

Or, maybe because I’m not sure what I’m supposed to be feeling at age 39.

It’s like going through puberty for the 4th time in your life. You’re not quite a kid but you’re not quite an adult.

I’m not married. I don’t have kids. But I own a house, have a pretty good job, am surrounded by a strong supportive community and certainly don’t sit around twiddling my thumbs with nothing to do.

So, is this it? Why does it feel like something is missing?

I’ve been feeling like this for a few years now, and expressed it to a friend recently, who is a slightly older version of me by a few years (not married, no kids, owns her house, has a solid career):

“Yeah, I went through that. And then, you suddenly realize,  you’re OK with it. And you’re happy. And you do what you want.”

That worked for a while. But it’s hanging over my head again. (I really think it’s the gray. And not enough outside time. I was never this cranky when I was hiking/skiing on a  regular basis.)

I’m not much of a long term planner, more of a short term, “get things done because I wanted them down yesterday” kinda of person when I feel passionate about a project – both in my professional and volunteer careers. I mean, when you find something good, why move on? I’ve never been super career driven, just something stable, I guess. I wasn’t even sure out of college what I wanted. Honestly, the magazine industry scared the daylights out of me and newspapers were the only other option for my skill set (aside from going back to college). I knew I always liked promotions/public relations when I dabbled in it in college. Promoting the tribes’ treaty rights wasn’t ever something I’d considered as a job but well, it’s surprising what people will pay you to do these days. It was also made clear to me that I’d likely work for the tribes after I sent home reports about how much I enjoyed covering them as a reporter.

It’s supposed to be sunny on March 6, 2018. I certainly hope so. I need that sun. I notice it helps considerably with being able to survive out here. I’ll work part of the day, then go for a run, clean up, and ferry into the city for a stroll to absorb the energy, then meet KG for dinner in Pioneer Square. And I know I’ll feel better by then.

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