I remember my cousin Charlie, years ago, having a big problem with being thirty. He's more than ten years older than me, but at the time I thought, thirty? what's the issue with that? But I did have a real problem with forty. And I didn't expect that.
When I turned 36 I became aware of something inside me, something that was beginning to be alarmed at the idea of turning forty. I was surprised at it, and a little concerned, but it wasn't with me all the time. At thirty seven, it was a little stronger, etc., until I was 39 and I realized that I honestly didn't know what was going to transpire when I turned forty, because there really isn't anything you can do about it, is there? Well, I mean, reasonably. But there was this dread within, which could only come to a head on the day, and - what would I do? Go into a panic? I didn't know.
At that time, I used to listen to Rush Limbaugh on the radio. I'm a political conservative, for the most part, and when he started his program, there was precious little in the media for conservatives - they are overwhelmingly Democrats and it is evident in their reportage. So, Rush was a real breath of fresh air; now I feel I've had enough of that kind of thing. Anyway, one day I was washing the floor, and listening, and he (he's a few years older than I) said when he was a kid, he always looked forward to getting into his forties! He could see that most folks were just finding out their place in the world in their twenties, getting established in their thirties, and by their forties, they were comfortable and knew where they belonged. I perked up at this speech, and it made me feel better. But for only a short while. Because I realized something: this "thing" within me was not a matter of logic or reason; if so, I could talk myself out of it. Even though I knew it didn't make sense, it was still there, and I didn't know where it came from - why it was there.
The day came - I was home, not working. I know what time I was born - 3:43 pm (EST) and during the day I'd find myself looking in the mirror, wondering if I'd flip out or anything. Suddenly, I realized the time had passed. I looked in the mirror; the realization came to me, deep within - I looked the same, I felt the same, everything was the same. That "feeling" fell away, and never came back.
This realization, of course, was nothing earth shaking, but the way it resounded within me was, I guess. I haven't had a recurrence of this either today, or ten years ago. It was all very strange, but I'm grateful, to say the least!
The end. :)
Henry, who only worries about his next meal.