Laugh now, lady. But you are headed for crisis number one.
At twenty-six I had my first adult "life crisis." I had dropped out of college. I worked a variety of jobs with no real career in sight. My relationships were unstable and I had the habit of moving apartments every six months to a year. I had no car and no savings and I had fuzzy goals, at best. I had three years of sobriety under my belt but it was messy. Barely half-way through my twenties and I felt like I had already wasted my life.
At thirty-seven I had another "life crisis." I was twice divorced. I was running out of money, and with the desire to have a child, I was running out of time. I moved again, finally landing in a single in an ancient six-story apartment building with an ever-broken elevator. I worked. I put dating on hold for a few years. I had goals, but I had no clear path for reaching them. My life felt nothing like I wanted it to and I felt like I was losing time.
On Sunday I will turn fifty-one-years-old. Because I expect to live to at least 102, right this moment, is mid-life. Just ripe for another crisis. My forties were fantastic and difficult and exciting and disappointing and life-y and yet? No crisis now. What has changed? I am having a sweet life, but that is not the difference. The difference of course is me.
In the past few years, I have given up the belief that my real life will happen "someday." This is it. That was "it" at twenty-six and thirty-seven too but I didn't understand that yet. Now, I don't expect some faraway life to be trouble free and and tidy and well rested with the windows shiny and all of the dry-cleaning picked up. I have stopped moving the prize ahead of myself. The goal is not out there, the goal is now. Even if it's sometimes hard, that counts too.
The story of how I got here is now just that, a story. Trying to look too far into the future is pointless because I have learned that I have absolutely no idea how this is all going to go down. It's all so painfully obvious.
I couldn't be there then, but I can be here now. Here I am. At fifty-one.