friendship · grace · life · wisdom

…so this is 50.

I can’t explain the high I received the day I turned 50…but it was nice. Real nice.

I was like…here I am! I did it! I’m still here!

I didn’t take myself out doing something stupid and GOD ONLY KNOWS how many times I was miraculously kept out of harm’s way. I’ll get to Heaven one day and be met at the gate not by St. Peter, but by my guardian angel giving me the stink eye.

There is an anticipation that comes with turning 50. It comes with some pressure. Pressure perhaps we place upon ourselves, but pressure nonetheless. It’s a halfway point. We think of life in a span of a hundred years. I grew up watching Willard Scott make a big to-do about individuals living to see 100 on The Today Show every morning. It’s a hoopla and halfway to hoopla needed a party.

I decided to landmark this mid-century milestone with something to remember…something to make not only myself smile, but some other people smile, too. I knew it was a long shot but I wanted to gather with some precious girls I’d stayed in touch with on and off since high school and college and do some laughing and catching up for the heck of it. I wanted to hug some friends I’d known since fried perms, popped collars, Madonna and Maybelline.

Kurt was trying to create a fuss for me behind my back that involved Paige, Laken and Hannah…once he realized what I was drumming up we merged the two and congregated all the guests in downtown Austin for a good time! My daughters got to see and meet some of the women I’ve talked about for years and my friends got to meet my daughters. Now, that’s a party!

julie, lisa, me, karen, michelle p, stephanie, michelle c, not pictured: melodie
me and the baby loves…laken, paige, hannah

We had THE BEST time. In fact, we had so much fun I forgot to take enough pictures to really make this blog post pop. That’s when you REALLY know you had fun…

I soooo admire the women in my life. I am so proud to be surrounded, near and far, by beautiful, strong, confident gals! Are you? Do you have good women in your life? Do you have friends that love you in and through your mess and stick around for the message? Do you have those who love you enough to call you out of stupid human tricks instead of choosing to stop calling you? Do you have fans and cheerleaders on the sidelines of your life when it’s a victory moment?!

If 20 years ago I gave you my best sage advice about relationships and life you might think to yourself, Oh please…what does SHE know… But now. Now I’m 50. Now when I say, “Listen up, sugar…” You lean in and listen to my age old wisdom and tall tales of back when.

So gather ’round my proverbial rocking chair and listen up… My advice to you is to be selective in this process. In the process of circling up your tribe. I’ve preached this before and I’ll preach it again…you become what you allow in your life. You better get picky, sister. I didn’t learn this lesson soon enough and if I could go back I would do some things different. Hear me when I say…stay clear of anyone that feels the need to knock you down in order to feel picked up. Run without apology from anyone who incessantly talks about others and tends to use your ears as a sponge for their judgement and jealousy. Not nice. If she is belittling you, she needs to go. If you feel unheard and unappreciated, first kindly talk about your feelings… and if the behavior continues…well…needs to go. You get one life! Don’t spend it with those who exhaust you! LISTEN TO ME! It’s not worth it. And if you are the one acting up…you better stop it. You picked up on some nasty habits from someone you let stay around too long and now you need a revival. Be Kind. Period.

Thank you for listening . I only type that because I care.

So…Now that I’m 50…

  • I am okay with still being a big dreamer and considering going back to college and getting my Master’s degree. I still don’t know exactly what I want to be when I grow up. Be encouraged if you struggle here…you are not alone.
  • I will not ever apologize for wanting to lose another 5 pounds…for ordering a salad and skipping dessert. Why did I ever feel like my desire to be fit and say no to a brownie was offensive? Good Lord.
  • I will continue to value my health to a degree that comes across as obsessive. Have you been watching the news? Healthcare is a crisis! We all better take it into our own hands. If you’re depending on the government to take care of you if you eat one too many cheeseburgers and skip the gym…you’re in trouble. They don’t care if you die.
  • I will not apologize for not being a fan of stuff and needing simple and clean in order to function properly. Stuff makes me crazy. I need order and pretty and without it I’m searching for order and pretty when I could be doing something else.
  • I will not deny my fear of heights and I’ll wait while you ride the roller coasters, jump out of planes, leap off bridges and I will FOREVER think snow skiing is the biggest waste of money because it involves heights and cold and potential broken bones. I’m not paying anyone to make me scared, cold or hospitalized.

I’m just getting started, people. This whole 50 thing is just the beginning of me.

You’ll know I’m old and over it if you catch me doing any of the following:

  • There’s 2 to 3 good inches of gray roots on the top of my head and I make zero effort to conceal it under a cute ball cap.
  • I give away all my heels and stop getting pedicures.
  • I don’t wear a bra in public…and you know it.
  • I eat bags of potato chips with vanilla coke chasers from a recliner while watching reruns of Family Feud…every night.
  • My sheets have not been washed in over a week and I have coupons clipped and sitting in piles on my nightstand.
  • I talk about my most recent bowel movement as if I’m bragging on one of my kids.
  • I get a cat.

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