Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The One Thing

I'm 48. I have almost no desire to be a different age. The older I've gotten, the faster and easier it has been for me to grow. It's like I spent the first 40 years building a foundation, and am now reaping the benefits of having a foundation from which to build. I remember the moment, a few years ago, when I realized that I'd gotten ahead of the learning curve and was able to leap into information - "aha" moments - rather than struggle and reach for them. The things that flummoxed me before were just annoyances now - or nothing at all. It was the alchemy of time that had brought me to this point. I had been only missing the time it took to reach the jumping-off point. So I'm glad to be old. Wrinkles and all.

I've worked hard to get here. And I have a good life. The one thing, though. I sometimes forget about joy. I often forget it. Working hard is my habit. Loose-limbed joy? Not so much.

Maybe this is why I enjoy being around kids, when I'm around them. They just can't help their absolute joy. Even in tears, they are in joy. "Down they will forget as up they grow" (as e. e. cummings would say). But they do start out knowing.

As did I. I know I did. I was a pretty joyful kid, I think. Full of life - and awkward moments - oh my gosh, the awkward moments (I blush as a few memories coming flooding back). Age has helped me soften those edges. But I think I've overdone gravity. Maybe it's time to get a little edgy again. And get into a zone of joy.

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