As I’m sitting at home typing this up, New York City is prepping for a snowstorm of supposedly epic proportions on my birthday. It’s kind of funny, my nickname at home, colloquially translated, means “Little Winter” because according to my parents, when I was born in the wee early hours of January 26th, it was the first time that it snowed that year. I’m going to be 28 years old. It’s funny, when you’re over 21, you keep rationalizing ages to yourself. Before you’re 25, you rationalize that you’re closer to 20 than you are 30. Before you’re 28, you can rationalize that you’re closer to 25 than 30, but when you turn 28, the specter of 30 looms ever closer.
When I was 18, I told myself that I had a vision for what my future would be. 21 seemed like the next big milestone, but that didn’t really interest me, but I figured 30 was a pretty big deal, so I made a list in my head of what I wanted to be at 30.
– Be a doctor
– Be married
– Have a baby on the way
– Be rich
– Be happy
You can see I was clearly an oracle back when I was 18. I guess it was very sweet in a simple, very childish kind of way.
Let me tell you first and foremost, none of those things have come true. In all likelihood, none of those things will even come to pass when I turn 30, and I’m fine with that.
There are people who say they have no regrets because “whatever has happened has made me into the person that I am today”. I think that’s a crock of shit. Every person has regrets, because I think every person has done something shitty, either to themselves, or to someone else in their life. To say that you have no regrets, that seems disingenuous, either that or you’re just selfish. But what you can do, is learn from your mistakes. I think you spend the first 18 years of your life trying to fit in, and then you spend the rest of your life trying to stand out.
I was never a popular kid when I was little, the things that I liked and loved weren’t the things that were cool. I was blessed with a close knit group of friends that I still talk to and parents and teachers who cared about me. I never really knew how lucky I was until I understood the unspeakable cruelty that some others went through in their childhood. I was blessed because even though I was very different, I had a place to fit in, a place to be myself, and a place where I could grow. I lost my way for a bit after that because I took things for granted, but since then, every single day has been spent trying to understand myself, and trying to help others do the same.
It’s been a decade since I made that list, and I now understand why none of those things have happened, I wasn’t ready for any of that. To be honest, I don’t know if I’m ready for it now, but I do know that when those things happen, I won’t take them for granted. As a man, I’ll know why I achieved those things, what they mean to me, and how hard I’ll fight to keep them, none of which I could’ve imagined 10 years ago.
The reason why this blog is important to me is because it helped me find my voice, and while each person’s journey is their own, a little company never hurt anyone. So, before I get back to my self-obsessed rantings, I’d just like to take this time to say something to all of you who read this. Whether I’ve known you for my entire life, or we’ve never even met, thank you. Thank you for taking a few seconds from your day to step into my mind and listening to what I have to say. Hopefully I’ve made you smile or laugh a little, and hopefully with me, not at me (though I’m sure sometimes that’s the case).
In short, thanks for coming along for the ride.
All the best,
The Errant Bachelor