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Sep 18

There is no stagnation

That’s’ the thing with life, it keeps moving into new and different stages. Everything is different now, in a completely different place than it was last year. The past year has seen Julie’s concussion – which lasted for the better part of a year, and Sam’s transition to full time in person school at Perkins. Jessie’s in Denmark and I miss her more than you can imagine. I’m working close to 30 hours a week now, for the first time in… 17 years, I guess. I worked 32 hours a week when I was pregnant with Sam. I’ve worked part time off and on since then, but never as many hours.

It’s an odd transition, into this stage of middle aged. Because that’s where I am. My kids aren’t fully grown up – Julie’s still only 13 (and I’m in no rush – I’d like to keep her there for a while), Sam’s still got a long way to go before he’s ready to launch and Jessie is rushing headlong into her career and life, but it’s still just beginning for her. She’s got another year and a half of college once she gets back from Denmark.

I’m spending a lot more time taking care of my mother, my in-laws. I’m the sandwich generation with a generation above and below me that I’m essentially in caretaker mode. With my kids – it’s constantly easing off, encouraging them to be on their own, and often getting shoved aside as they push for more and more independence. And on the other side – it’s a lot of begging them to let us help, to tell us about doctor’s appts and diagnoses and what the hell is going on. It’s a state of weird limbo – because so much of what I’m doing is in response to their (both kids and parents) needs. And I have so little control over all of it.

I’m also tired, a lot, and getting hot flashes like it’s my job. I’m incredibly aware that in a few short months I’m going to be fifty years old, and I’m not entirely thrilled. I mean, look at the alternative, of course, but still, fifty just seems so OLD. I’ve been trying it on for a size for the past year, telling myself that I’m 50 already, and hoping to avoid a the full on freak out panic that I had when I turned 40. 50 is just.. old. I still wear cutoffs and ponytails. I walk around barefoot (and my feet hurt because apparently that’s thing that I’m old). I can’t be 50. And yet… I am.

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