Hitting thirty reminds me that I’m officially old. It’s one of the scariest numbers to hit, a major landmark in the scheme of only knowing twenty nine years of angst, revolt and perhaps a healthy regard for misbehaviour. My entire life up until twenty-five, was about waiting until I was old enough. Now, I wish I could go back. Back to a time of care free weekdays, getting scolded for trying to eat another cookie. They’re all distant memories now. Thirty was the age of people you could no longer trust, those old farts were part of the system that was ‘keeping you down’. Now I am the system; I’m the grumpy old bastard silently cursing teenagers with blue hair and no respect for their eardrums. Hey, that’s part of growing up, right? Realizing you’re doing things you despised your parents for saying or doing. At least I’ll always be younger than my folks.

There have been so many milestones in my life, becoming a father, a husband, being laid off, enduring a strike, building a house, and a becoming a student of cancer are some of the most memorable. And those all happened in the last five years. My memory becomes a little hazy trying to go backward to a time of living with parents, of getting my first job, of thinking I knew what love was. Those were milestones that seem not as significant these days. But being a father puts all that into perspective. Now all my kid’s major milestones will be important to me, she’s going to forget them, but I’ll hold onto them.

Life is funny that way.

I’ve had the good fortune of understanding that life can be trying at times. Sounds odd that I’m saying that. But it’s really those tough times that define a person. Who you are going into rough times is certainly not the same person who emerges out the other side. The learning experience firsthand is incredible. And I can look back and say ‘I did that, I survived it’. Not everyone will be given the same opportunities. I certainly hope many don’t. But I’m glad I did.

So I’m happily not freaking out over the whole ordeal. There’s lots I haven’t accomplished yet, but I’ll get around to it.

Maybe when I hit forty I’ll really freak out.

-Dexter

 

Is there a tiny stripper that pops out the top?