Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Looking Back and Looking Forward

"Well... some day you'll understand".

This phrase was spoken from the lips of many good men and I can prove to you that this quotation is an indisputable fact.

The reason that I know this is that I remember hearing this phrase fall off my deaf ears many times. In fact, it came from my own fathers mouth as he put forth his best effort to lecture me in his most stern manner.

“You’ll understand someday” he would always profess in his typical mellow yet convincing manner.

It was during those confusing and disconcerting years when I somehow managed to find my own survival mechanism and pull myself through all of the teenage stages of typical pent up angst, hormonal imbalances, and nefarious behavior that come along with it.

Call it an instinctual survival mechanism, but I somehow managed to crawl out of that snake pit of competing interests and survive and even flourish fairly unscathed (ok well maybe with a few scars).

Yet here I stand today at this very moment, in the form of a grown middle aged man with an ever growing beer gut.

Feeling privileged to be in "decent" health (under 200 pounds), to be gainfully employed, and to be living in the capital of the free world. I am only left to wonder when this "coming of age" post-teen enlightenment managed to take its hold in me. This phrase had been so frequently repeated and promised to me as a young rebellious youth that it's now engraved in my mind.

The person that I am today is in stark contrast to my pre-college frame of mind and even my immediate post-college "championship" years. It's no secret, I could have been labeled or even branded as one of those so called "problem children".

I'll admit that my first honest pull off the smooth neck of a 100 proof 32 liter liquor bottle came right around the ripe old age of 13. In addition to my self-indulgences with illicit substances, I am not proud of the fact that I graduated nearly last in my high school class. Rumor has it that I even wore the silver bracelets once before the age of 16. It’s true, my moral compass typically pointed south in these formative but festive years of adolescence.

I'll keep it simple and say only that many lessons have been learned since the early days and although I may have struggled throughout my teenage experience and participated in some unsavory debaucheries in my twenties, I now have learned to take life a little more seriously.

So I take a drink and say...

Dear "My Twenties",

This has been a long time coming. First, I wanted to thank you for all of those years. College, relationships, breakups, first jobs, hangovers, travels, deaths and births.

We had a lot of fun together (I think...) details are kind of hazy at this point but I will never forget you.

However, I wanted to let you know that I feel that we've grown apart and I'm moving on with my life.

Yes, it's true that I've met someone else. Her name is "My Thirties". We've grown so close to each other over the past few years and we are ready to make a commitment to each other.

So as of Sunday Sept. 6th I am initiating the "no contact" rule with you.

Please don't call because I will not be returning your phone calls. Oh and by the way... I will not accept your flowers.

It’s over.

Good Luck!