It stood out like a beacon, one silver hair on top of my little boys head. I stroked his dark locks away from it, surprised, and murmured “Bodhi, you have a silver hair!”
Quick as a flash he pulled away “Well don’t pull it out!” he gasped “that’s my power source!!”
I’m getting some power sources of my own lately. They sprout, my husband tells me, from the very top of my head, shying away from anywhere I can spot them. Clever of them, because I pluck them on sight.
“Don’t worry about them,” my husband reassures me lovingly “I like older women.” Sweet, if I weren’t younger than him.
But I’m wondering if they really are a power source of sorts. I’ll soon be 32, which by my son’s standards is “really, really incredibly old.” By my parent’s standards it’s laughably young. By my standards it’s somewhere quite fabulous.
With aging comes apathy – about the things that used to seem such a huge deal in the past. I find myself less bothered by the ‘what ifs’, the maybe’s, the shoulds or shouldn’ts. I’m less held back by my self-imposed rules. That apathy is a little bit awesome.
With aging comes perspective – which simplifies complex things and gives the wisdom to question things that once seemed simple. I love that. I love it when life poses questions for us, and we run with them, enjoying a meaty debate with ourselves as we wonder for the sake of wondering and question because we learn just by doing so.
With aging comes appreciation – of the things that have passed and of those we have now. The ability to look back and realize how damn precious those moments were, those freedoms, those feelings, allows us to live them again in a way. It carves them deeper into our memories, gives them more texture in our reflections. And we get how fast it goes – these bits – the bits right now that seem daft or funny or easy or exhausting, and it reminds us to really grab onto them and squeeze every last drop out of them, because before we know it they’ll be memories and we want to be able to reflect back on them with all the richness they deserve.
With aging also comes a healthy shiver of fear – because I’m suddenly aware of the fleetingness of this time, when I’m still young enough to get away with things, so I’m pushed to enjoy the physicality of where I am just that little bit more. To gain a little more pleasure from being in my skin.
It’s not that there’s anything more precious about the age I am than any other – but sometimes youth seems like an endless summer that we can laze through because nothing changes. Aging is that first hint of crisp autumn air that reminds us to suck up every ray of sun.