1. You are not old. Your eggs are not rotting. You will get married and have children, and you’re not “almost 40.” Just wait till you’re 40. Or, worse yet, 47…
2. Stop being so wistful and hopeful and get a career that actually is lucrative. It may be all fun to be an artist now, but if you’re one of the very few who “make it,” even if you’re truly talented, it won’t be fun when you have to reinvent yourself in ten years and wonder why all your friends have people who report to them, and you’re entry level.
3. This follows #2: Money matters. Yeah, I know; I know. “Happiness is what’s important; money isn’t.” Giiiiirl, I used to think that, too, when it was cool to live in a fifth floor walk up studio in NYC. Not so cool when you have two children to support, a mortgage, a car payment, and bills. Get a real job. And, sadly, money makes the world go round. This was a hard lesson for me.
4. Divorce totally sucks. So, be very mindful of red flags and any other issues before you get married. The choice to marry someone is actually huge. And, even if you’re 30, panicked, and want to be like all your friends and get married, don’t just insert groom/just add water with whomever you’re with at that age. Be picky. Wait. Be prudent. Be wise. Listen to your instincts.
5. Following #4, don’t have kids if you’re not in a happy marriage, because they are not a bandaid, and it will make divorce all the more complicated, as you will forever be joined with the father of your children. And, if that happens, then be nice. It’s more important that you coparent well than hate your ex. Your kids need both of you, and they want to love both of you.
6. Don’t begrudge having to go to another wedding at age 28. You know why? The invites will stop soon, and then you’ll miss the free booze, dance floor, and revelry of weddings! They are so fun! Later on, they are far and few between. Worse yet, you are no longer at the “single’s table;” you are the overweight aunt in the corner, who is dancing to Brick House. #justsaying
7.Start botox by age 40. If you catch the wrinkles early, it’s easier to fix than later when you have indents in your forehead and wonder why you look extra terrestrial.
8. Following #7, wear sunscreen. I know it’s fun to get tan, and you look better, but either go get some Jergens Glow or spray tan, instead. Getting sunburnt will age you, create wrinkles, and can cause skin cancer. It’s real.
9. Most problems at 30, in my experience, are not as bad as problems at 40. So, be conscious of that and chill a bit. You’ll wish you didn’t waste the youthful time agonizing. Go out with friends, or on a hike, instead, and have a good time.
10. I mean, maybe don’t listen to other people (like me- ha!) Follow your gut and “the whispers,” #oprah. You will land on your feet. It will be okay.
You know what I am tired of? Rude people. I have spent an inordinate amount of time this week trying to just not absorb negative energy and hostile behavior surrounding me, but it’s out of control. There are only so many times you can be like water off a duck’s back, or Teflon, or whatever analogous thing you must be to fend of vitriolic blasts. UGH!
I am not going to write a blog on how to reject or recognize toxic people, since there are many of those blogs (and people)–believe me; I’ve read them.
But, I do wonder a few things. First, I wonder how people can be so blind and detached about other people’s feelings and lack diplomacy? I know, for myself, (and I’m an empath), I always think about how what I say or do will land if it’s something potentially sensitive. Ispend inordinate amounts of time “feeling bad” about everything, and I can’t comprehend when people can be outright hostile unapologetically. In fact, I feel bad so often, that my family and I started a jar where we’d all put a dollar in it every time we said “I feel bad.” We figured this would be a great way to save for an opulent vacation, since we say it so many times a day. Today, I owe $2.
Maybe some others should start a jar.
Next, I wonder how we all got so angry. Granted, the pandemic is certainly horrible, and we are all cooped up and pissed off on some level about the injustice. But, really…haven’t we learned that human life is fragile, that we are better served being peaceful and taking time to be somewhat grateful? Why be so MEAN to other people and lash out? Like, what purpose does that serve?
If you have something mean to say, figure out a way to say it tactfully. In short, at its most basic translation: stop sucking. Really.
Lastly, I wonder why no one corrects these folks who feel it’s okay to walk around being so offensive. I think, sadly, some people are proud of the their “I don’t give a ****” attitude and wear it like a badge of honor. There are bumper stickers, magnets, pins, etc. that all have that as a motto, as IF it is some kind of virtue. No, in fact, being humane and caring about others is probably more meritorious and deserving of praise than being caustic with armor up all the time. Go to therapy, heal thyself.
These people obviously are hurting. We should FEEL BAD for THEM.
You know when you get the notification alert that you have an upcoming meeting in–a half hour? Yeah. That kind of sucks, when you had totally forgotten about it. I was just sitting here working, snacking on some multigrain chips and about to log into my snack tracker on my diet app, and I was told I was about to miss an appointment in 2 hours. ARGH. WHY? Honestly, I should set alerts like every 15 minutes, because the ‘day before’ alert is too far from the appointment, and the ‘day of’ is always a shock to the system.
Or…maybe I should stop making appointments.
Oh, and this is kind of funny, but maybe financially shrewd and prudent: I did Easter this morning (2 days late). The rabbit “decided to come on Tuesday, because when he rang the doorbell Sunday, no one was home!” Few things about this. First, I was out of town, and the kids were at their dad’s house. So, they had a nice basket and presents there. Secondly, my mom took them on an egg hunt and they got candy with her also. However, when I got home Sunday night, my 8-year-old looked at my like Cindy Loo Who in the #Grinch after the Christmas tree was stolen, and wondered where her basket was here at my house.
“Mommy, did the Easter bunny forget to come?” she asked. Blink*Blink.
Um…Sort of? But, NO! He is just going to be a day late. So, get this though: It’s WAY BETTER for your wallet. I went to Walgreen’s to stock up on these squishy toys and pillows and candy yesterday, and it was all 50 percent off. Sort of a score. This bunny is the budget bunny and a day late, but not a dollar short!
Here are some of the treats I got.
So, she the kids were super psyched after all!
Maybe next year I can set myself an alarm for Easter. Hm…
Today, I found my phone in the refrigerator. Middle shelf. Yes, I had been running around like a maniac, hurdling over the dog, trying to get out the door for work when I realized I didn’t have my phone. Uh-oh…the panic set in. This is like leaving without clothes on. I mean, I HAD to find it, and fast. I leapt up the stairs, two at a time, huffing and cursing. Frantically, I ran back downstairs, pulling drawers open, rummaging through bags, turning round and round, like a robo-vacuum.
Then, it occurred to me: hey, I was making lunches, and maybe, just maybe, it’s in the FRIDGE! And, there it was. I couldn’t take a photo of it, which I thought to, because I was laughing, because I’d have to take it with the phone!
This story leads me to my initial thought when I sat to write this blog: I’m doing too many things at once. I am thinking about like 15 different things simultaneously. Part of this is inherent to my job in public relations and marketing, where I have multiple accounts I work on each day, shifting back and forth between them with different tones, voices, styles, and needs. Each account uses a different part of my brain.
My brain hurts, sometimes.
But that’s not always a bad thing. I like that I have to think at work, in particular. When I was an actress in NYC back in the days of yore (imagine me hunched over, telling this story in an old lady voice), I used to temp as my day job.
The 8-hour temping days were seriously painful, because I was doing work that my goldfish could do. I remember I’d show up as the new “temp for the week,” sit in whomever secretary’s desk I was replacing, and look around.
I’d notice her pink, raspberry-scented Victoria’s Secret lotion, the photos of her kids, her pilled cardigan hanging over the back of my swiveling desk chair, and her change of shoes under the desk (some sort of beaten up flats). People would by-and-large ignore me, but sometimes there was a nice “coworker,” who would ask me about my life or say hi and bye to me. I was kind of like the fly on the wall. I don’t blame them for not wanting to get to know me, as I was there merely temporarily, hence the name “temp.” The days would drag on and on, and some days, I’d only be given the tasks of making copies or stuffing envelopes. Other days, I’d be given more “difficult” tasks, like writing correspondence. They were always AMAZED at how the office chimp was actually skilled, a graduate of a good college, with significant work experience.
Anyway, I digress. My point it this: I am elated to have a real job now that I get to use my brain and, even, that I sometimes feel harried! I’d rather that than staring at the clock, or trying on someone else’s Payless flats under the desk.
So it’s not all that bad when you’re too busy and leaving your phone in the fridge.
“When you find something you like, stick with it.” This is what an inspirational older man told me the other day, when I asked him how he was able to work for the same two companies for 50 years and stay married for 35 years. Seems simple enough, right? You like your job? Stick with it. You like your spouse? Stick with him/her. But, to me, that seemed outlandish at the time. Today, in many industries, people hop from job to job every five years, and even spouses and partners. I used to joke that when you meet someone new, you create a “lease” with him that will expire after five years. If you want to renew it, you can. But, otherwise, you’re good. Move on.
I think I’ve developed this sort of transient mentality over the years, having changed careers and cities many times. I’m also divorced. I did have long term relationships (8 years, 7 years, 5 years), but none that have lasted 35 years. Well, I mean, I would have been dating someone at age 10 if that were the case. Interesting to note: my boyfriend now is someone I met when I was 10. Hm… is this a sign?
Anyhow, I got to thinking that this man’s statement about sticking with things you like is simple, yet very complex. For some of us, it’s not so easy. Tenacity and perseverance are not necessarily attributes consistent with today’s fast-paced culture. Our attention spans are limited, we use technology to elicit immediate results, and we strive for more, more, more. Sticking with something seems lackluster, or not ambitious–complacent.
BUT, there is merit to it, I think, and something to aspire to. “Wherever you go, there you are.” That’s another saying. No matter where you move, what new job you start, what relationship you begin, you are still YOU (well, unless you undergo dramatic changes with therapy). I have learned this. Thing is, I’m essentially the same person I was when I was, like, 28. Oh, how I long to be 28 physically as well! But, yeah, I’m the same old, same old; and, now, just old.
I am going to take note from this man. From now on, I am STICKING WITH IT, IF I LIKE IT! YES! No need to think of bigger and better. Just BE.