My birthday is the 26th day of October, meaning this past year was my "golden year."
And it really was.
It was my first year of marriage with Mitch, during which we designed and built our first little home together at Worthington Manor. I grew a tiny human and brought him into the world. And Cord and I started Makeshift, this passion project that was a long time coming, with a partner and co-creator I could only ever have dreamed of finding and working with. Yep, 26 has been kind and generous.
Which has me wondering about 27…
We’ve all got feelings about growing older, and as a nostalgic person, I get emotional saying goodbye to years of my life, especially ones that hold beautiful and formative experiences. For example, I look back on year 24 as my beautiful undoing, 25 was a kind of rebirth, and 26 made me whole. It’s such an odd tendency, to measure life this way. To give time this kind of power. To collect experiences and hold them in little containers we call years. To worry that one container may not hold as much treasure as another, or worse, that these containers may start to feel smaller and smaller as we perceive time to fly by faster and faster.
One of the things I told Mitch when I was falling in love with him is that he made time slow down for me. I felt like the days stood apart from one another, and each one held unique and memorable bits. I didn’t feel time slipping through my fingers. I didn’t feel experiences blending together, blurring into a forgettable past. Everything felt vibrant and meaningful and…slow. My world had always spun at a million miles per hour, so it was the most refreshing change. It’s one of the things I still love best about being together.
Because of this, I might have guessed his son would possess the same quality. But I didn’t, and have been happily surprised…again. Phoenix slows life down even more. I don’t live day to day with him. We live moment to moment. He has no schedule. He eradicates the relentless control of the clock. He erases time. He has turned me into an even more intense observer than I ever was. Studying him in all his mystery and nuance, and weaving our experiences together, is my new passion. It’s a dance we’ll be doing to a rhythm all our own until time interrupts us some day far from now.
Perhaps that’s what 27 holds for me, freedom from this need to collect and measure memories. I think it holds slowness, rhythm outside of time, quality over quantity, and an unending amount of discoveries. It will be a year observing a tiny soul, who's part of me and yet totally new and foreign, as he develops and grows and changes. He does so very effortlessly so far, at total peace, wholly surrendered. It’s incredible to watch him experience constant transition so easily; something I, as an adult, wrestle against and resist.
It probably sounds really corny, cheesy, and fluffy like a marshmallow (food metaphors on steroids here), and it’s because it’s challenging to explain in words. Brand new people aren’t conditioned yet, and it’s fascinating to compare the way we big people mark and measure reality with the way they simply experience it. It’s inspiring to consider a life spent honoring the rhythm of our souls, instead of one governed by obligations, expectations, and the taskmaster timepiece.
I’m inspired to take a page from his book of wisdom as I crossover into my next year tomorrow. I want to accept growth with grace, embrace the change that is coming, allow myself to transform into my next phase of self, and ignore the clock for now. I’ll try not to measure, and instead just experience the inevitable transformation. Then perhaps a year from now, I’ll step back in time just for a moment to notice how I’ve changed.
So, come at me 27. Teach me your lessons and morph me as you will.
Be firm or be gentle, but don’t hold back.
I’m here and I’m ready.
Let’s do this.