My husband and I went out to dinner last night. Knowing we would both likely have a couple of adult beverages, we did the responsible adult thing and scheduled a ride through Lyft. The driver was a young 20-something guy who apparently has no filter and must not have been concerned about his tip or review because in the first minute of conversation he referred to my husband and I as “old people”.
“Old people”. I turn 45 tomorrow.
Turning 45 does not bother me. Being 45 doesn’t bother me. Wrinkles, grey hair, some saggy body parts – those things don’t really even bother me.
Am I young? Clearly not. Am I solidly in the second half of life? Without doubt. But am I old? I don’t feel old (most days), but this first impression by a stranger did make me stop, and think, and remember some thoughts I first shared on my personal Facebook page on the eve of my 40th birthday. I share those thoughts now, as they are as relevant today as they were 5 years ago…
Once upon a time 4 years of high school French gave me decent conversational skills, but better reading comprehension skills. Close to three decades later, lack of use has turned those skills rusty but some phrases still come through in French before they translate to English. One of those phrases is “Je ne regrette rien” – “I regret nothing”
Je ne regrette rien – how I live my life.
Life is too short for regret. That’s not to say I haven’t made mistakes, had lapses in judgment, made questionable decisions, etc. But every moment of learning from a mistake, recovering from lapses in judgement or living with the aftermath of questionable decisions has been a part of a life that brought me to where I am today. And while there are challenges in this life, there is nothing that I would change about where I am today.
Assuming 45 is the half time of my life, I’ve been a pretty lucky girl. Lucky enough to know that if I were to spend time regretting things that could have been, I’d be a fool.
So when I wake up tomorrow with a calendar declaring I am 45, I will be thankful. Thankful for the 45 years that came before and every year yet to come. Thankful for the freedom to both make and grow from mistakes. Thankful for every person to come and go from my life as each has been a part of shaping the person I am. Thankful for the loved ones who loved and supported me unconditionally (even in the midst of questionable decisions!) And thankful for every day that gives me a new opportunity to make a difference for others in this world.
So is 45 old?
So what if it is? There’s still more life to come and Je ne regrette rien!