I took a lifespan development course as part of my psychology minor. I wish I had paid more attention.
At 22, I pretty well understood what I’d gone through as a child and adolescent, was curious about what the next ten years would look like, and not all that concerned beyond that. I should have been because, guess what, those ten years have come and gone. And I sold my textbook back, so I have no reference material!
I consider myself something of a late bloomer. Most of my friends married and/or had children quite early. I didn’t find my way down the aisle until after my 30th birthday. Many of them walked right off the commencement stage and into their chosen career path. I was gainfully unemployed for a year and a half and still don’t feel I’ve found my niche. For all the times it felt like I was racing to catch up with everyone else, I suddenly find myself grown up and wondering what the heck is happening.
My approach to life is changing. Where I used to see things as all or nothing, I’m seeing gray matter. I’m questioning “knowledge” I’ve been fed for most of my life regarding health and fitness, purpose, happiness, and what we’re supposed to be doing with the time we have on this planet. I think I may be driving Prince Hubby crazy with my minutes-long ramblings about nothing-something-everything. (He never lets it show, though. He’s a boss like that.)
While I’ve always been a thinker, this more contemplative side is new. It’s not strange for me to sit quietly, staring at the corner of a place mat, flipping a single thought over and around and up and down and inside out for twenty minutes or so. (Time well spent?) There were years when I couldn’t sit still. I always needed to be doing something. Even while watching TV, I’d often have a notebook in my lap, my attention split between Scrubs and whatever to-do list I was updating.
I’m not entirely comfortable with this new stage of life. I am hoping to come to a point where I can embrace my growth. Until then, I’ll straddle the line between young Lauren and still-young-but-not-quite-as-young-as-she’d-like-to-think-she-is Lauren.
Let’s get the beach ball rolling: Tell us about your most reflective stage of life so far.