Thirty-three was a good year, my first good year in some time. I told Greg that I wasn’t much looking forward to turning 34 because I doubted that this year would outdo 33. “So it’s all downhill from here then?” he asked.
Well, yes. That’s not to say that everyone older than 33 is the mothball-scented sweater moldering in the back of the closet. I know that many adventures and challenges lie ahead of me. This time with these two tiny people is the best time of my life. One insists that I’m the “bestest” singer in the world. The other grins, crinkly-eyed, each time I appear.
When I say “best,” I don’t mean easiest. Why do I tend to focus on the piles of dirty laundry mushrooming in our bedrooms? On the weeds marching in procession across our lawn? Sometimes I’m so engaged by the dustballs frolicking in the corners that I can’t see the good moments darting through the mess.
And I do mean darting. I have to watch for them because they are short. Henry’s smiling moods last a few minutes, whereas the greasy dishes in the sink last forever. I want to snatch all of these moments from the air and stuff them into a diary, a camera, a computer. Save them for my old age. Catching them is about as easy as catching the prismatic bubbles we blow in the backyard on a windy day. I can’t keep them all. Sometimes I have to watch them float away.
So, yes, 33 was a good year. Our society is a bit obsessed with the idea of improvement, with the notion that we can keep making our lives better and better. I’m a rebel. I’m content with life right now. If this is as good as my life gets, that’s fine with me.