Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Standing in the Middle of Life

I didn't want to post anything tonight. This evening was supposed to be about family and the walk I planned to take in the unusually brisk pre-Fall Montreal air. After bathing Jake and reading him the prerequisite four bedtime stories ('prerequisite' sounds less bureaucratic when associated with a child rather than a biology class), I decided to feed my addiction to visual stimulation and found this on Youtube:

Montreal, 1975. I was 11, not even in puberty, and only beginning to see signs of the nose that would define my insecurities for the next six years. I lived for the Montreal Canadiens and "Welcome Back Kotter". I love the people in this video - they are so unassuming and unselfconscious. There seemed to be a freedom of spirit that I don't see in young people anymore, as the pressures to conform to a standard of acceptable behavior are so culturally legislated, it is hard to stand out. I know a couple of young twentysomethings who do, and they are special to me.

I'm feeling pressure too. 1975 was 33 years ago, and I am now 44, likely having lived the first half of my life. I took a walk at lunch today and seemed to be ultrasensitive to the presence of elderly people around me. I know I will get there one day, and it is hard for me to accept it. This is the first time I've been hit with a sense of a midlife crisis. I met someone after work today and could barely talk, everything sounding trite and awkward. I was forcing out words to keep a conversation going when I really just wanted to reach out and confess my sudden insecurity, but was deathly afraid to drop my guard for fear of looking foolish. Ridiculous, ain't it. 44 and so much more! 44 is the new 35, or is it 33! Brad Pitt is 44, and so is Lenny Kravitz, if the latter doesn't actually fall into a category more embarassing than praiseworthy. I feel great, healthy and fit, and am happy with many aspects of my life. I know some wonderful, incredibly talented people. There are other things I must work on, as the secret to staying young inside is to always try to develop and as I like to say in office meetings "embrace change". Well, maybe it's time to take that envigorating walk. Meanwhile, I hope the kids in the video have dealt with this already and are doing well, looking back on this period and smiling. Afterall, it's a great city!

Postscript next day: A walk 'll do ya good!

No comments: