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24 April 2005

Thoughts on turning 30

Today is my 30th birthday.

I’m not sure exactly how I feel about this.  I don’t really feel
any older than I did yesterday or a couple of months ago, and I don’t
really feel much older than when I was 27 or 28, to be honest.

(My mom, however, called today, and she said that she doesn’t feel like
she can have a kid who’s thirty.  And I actually sort of remember
when she turned thirty.  But she remembered it was a Thursday, and
about 10.30 in the morning, and it was kind of cloudy, but she saw a
little bit of sun through the window in the delivery room.)

Perhaps I’m supposed to start thinking about mortality or something
like that, and I guess I am in some way, in that I have now had three
decades of time to do something with life, and so one might want to
have something to point at.  One of the first thoughts that comes
to me is, “God, I am STILL in school.”  I’ve only been out of
school for a year or two since I turned five.

Here’s the thing.  One of the themes that’s come up a bit in
talking with my spiritual director is the need most of us (all of us?)
have to “do” something, “make” something, “impact” something.  I
certainly feel this need, in almost all the areas of my life —
physical, mental, professional, spiritual.  What do I have to show
for my efforts?  What output comes from my input?

And that’s the trap of our world, whether because of the particular
logic of the capitalist ethos, some innate human nature, or whatever
explanation you like.  But perhaps we are most fully ourselves,
most fully human, most fulfilled when we simply are.

Thirty’s a big marker only if I’m looking to validate or put a stamp of
accomplishment on my life so far.  But maybe thirty just is if I
just am.

Maybe more on this later.

Posted in Day2Day on 24 April 2005 at 6:21 pm by Nate