On August 17, 2005, I turned 30. I wrote a fun little column that day for the newspaper I was working for at the time about the milestone.
I complained about my hairline (that hasn’t changed), I excitedly mentioned I was about to get married (yeah, that one didn’t work out too well, but I got it right the second time), and I talked about being slightly depressed at the big 3-0.
This is the last paragraph of that column:
Besides, I thought to myself earlier, when I’m 40, I’ll be dying to go back to the days I was in my thirties.
Perspective is a beautiful thing.
I went and looked up that article Sunday night, just for fun, to remind myself what 30-year-old me used to think.
Turns out I was dead wrong. I turn 40 today, and I don’t want to go back to my early thirties at all.
I am living an incredibly charmed and blessed life these days. I have found the perfect soulmate, a woman who complements and compliments me, who truly loves and understands me and makes me incredibly happy.
I’ve got that little fella in the photo above; at 30, I couldn’t change a diaper, put together a sippy cup, or figure out how to avoid stepping on 17 baby toys all on the way from the bathroom to the kitchen.
I now know how to do those things. And my life is immeasurably better for it, and for helping bring that boy into the world 11 months ago.
I have wonderful friends, some I’ve had for all four decades of my life, some newer ones who’ve become so cherished. I have an amazing family, most of whom helped me celebrate the big 4-0 over the weekend at Peter Luger’s steakhouse in Brooklyn (even my best friend Clay, a devout vegetarian, couldn’t resist the famous steak there.)
I do fulfilling work as a stay-at-home father, seeing every small change in my little guy and cherishing every moment we have together (OK, not every moment. The ones where he’s screaming and his lower lip is quivering and I have no Earthly idea what to try next? Those moments aren’t scrapbook material.)
I have plenty of freelance work to keep me busy, I enjoy my occasional substitute teaching gig, and since my last birthday I’ve found incredibly rewarding volunteer writing opportunities with the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation, filled with sensational people bursting with good hearts. I’ve learned more about courage this past year, talking to parents and kids dealing with brain tumors, than I ever learned covering pro athletes.
My life is as good as it’s ever been, and I’m not interested in going back to being 30, or even 20.
Thirty was better than 20, and 40 is better than 30.
Can’t wait to see what 50 will bring.
**Finally today, it’s late August, the U.S. Open is two weeks away (I can barely contain my excitement), so here’s a little bizarre tennis shot for you. Kei Nishikori is one of the top five players in the world, but even he once in a while hits a shot that your average weekend hacker could do better.
Seriously, this is pretty hideous at the :16 mark.