All I want for my 40th birthday is an uninterrupted poo.
I don’t want gifts. I don’t want a holiday. I don’t even need a card.
Just 5 mins where someone is not running in to tell me something, calling out to ask me something, drying their hair or brushing their teeth in the same room.
Surely on this special day I should be able to sit on the throne in peace.
Well today is my special day. Today I turn 40. And no. I have still not been afforded this little nugget of luxury.
I’m not freaking out at turning 40 as much as I thought. I’ve known it was coming for quite a while. Infact I feel like it’s just another birthday. The world doesn’t seem to be caving in around me and the mid-life crisis I have been expecting hasn’t hit me. They do say 40 is the new 30 and that 50 is the new 40 – maybe that’s the tipping point.
50 is definitely a lot more daunting. 50 is approaching ‘grandpa age’. Grandpa age. Sheesh.
I never felt like I would get to 40. Not in a James Dean kind of way – more in a Peter Pan, Michael J Fox, Ralph Macchio, Jamie Harris never-aging/forever-young-kind-of-way .
I definitely look at my older peers and see what they are up to and most of them are still doing what they did 10 years ago – albeit a little slower and with a few more injuries.
There was a time I could work out my age relatively quickly; 1974 to 1995 is 21 years; 1974 to 2012 is …….……the longer it takes me to work out my age – the older I feel.
Another way I indirectly make myself feel old is when I check the dates on movies or significant events.
The Terminator…..30 years ago
The Breakfast Club – 29 years ago.
Live Aid – 29 years ago.
Ferris Buellers Day Off – 28 years ago.
Freddie Mercury died 23 years ago
Princess Diana died 17 years ago.
30 years ago. Say it out loud and it doesn’t feel real.
If I think 40 is old – imagine how my parents must feel. They will be reliving the day I was born. Lamenting how the years have flown by. I find it hard to imagine having a teenage son, let alone a 40 year old one.
I am fitter today than I was when I was 20. A lot of people I know seem to be. The ever increasing waist line, the illnesses of others and the passing of friends close in age is enough to trigger a mild panic attack. This in turn starts the fitness regime. Jogging seems to be the fitness exercise of the majority.
I am not a jogger. I prefer playing sport to keep fit. So I play squash and footy.
Telling people I play squash seems to trigger the same response from non squash players.
“really, squash? That’s very physical, that will keep you fit. But just be careful, you are getting on a bit”.
“Really.” I reply. “ getting on a bit? I have been playing squash for years thanks. And I am always careful.”
Until last week.
Maybe it was a warning. Maybe I was being taught a lesson. Maybe the niggling little muscle soreness I felt in my 40 year old leg should have been given the respect it deserved. Instead I laughed in its face and pushed on as hard as ever, like I did in the old days.
I pushed on until my weary calf muscle could take it no more. On Sunday night I felt a pop mid squash game and ended up arse over tit on the ground grabbing my torn muscle.
I was gutted. Not so much for the injury or the pain – but I was scheduled to play in a footy final 2 days later.
I spent the next 2 days at the osteo doing all I could to get myself ready. On the night of the final I hobbled around that field like a gimp on a lead and busted two fingers in the process. We lost but I gave it all.
Now the most frustrating thing is the time it is going to take to get back to full fitness. Age definitely plays a factor in that.
So what did I get for my 40th?
A limp and 2 broken fingers.
I also wrote a letter to my future self on my 50th birthday. Let’s see how much of it comes true.
LETTER TO MY FUTURE SELF
“Happy Birthday Rob.
What a milestone. 50 – well done on making it this far!
Congratulations on the twins by the way. A surprise I know – but that’s what happens when you take advantage of your wife on the train home after a rare night out.
Hope you are back on speaking terms with the neighbour following the fire. Zak says he really didn’t mean it and I believe him. I hear he has joined a rock band. That’s great he is an awesome drummer – and he’s really grown into his piercings. That tattoo across his face really complements his eyes. You must be so proud.
So now you are also a grandpa. That is great. Max and his old teacher eh – who would have thought. They will make a great couple. Hopefully she will get parole in 5 years.
Enjoy the next 10 years I think they are going to be great for you.
Have a happy 50th.
Ps – Is your wife out of rehab yet?”