I’m 42

I’ve reached the age where I no longer am interested in my age-accelerating. The years go by faster and faster, and I wonder what I’m doing on this planet. Most nights before going to bed, I get a brief thought about dying and no longer being on this earth. It hurts my chest, and I try my best to think about anything else because thinking about death is not productive. But after you have no more children and they are reaching the age of leaving the house, you think about what is left.

I have been retired for almost four years now and struggle to think about life working. I have so much I want to do that I can’t even remember how I lived while working. My kids go to school, and my wife will usually leave the house to go shopping or volunteer. I do things on my list and procrastinate about running.

I survived one health scare last year but became aware of another that I pushed down. I am pre-diabetic. As the joke goes, everyone is pre-diabetic, just like everyone is pre-cancer, but I know I eat too many simple carbohydrates. Looking back on my life, it is how I existed. I would eat sugary cereal and milk for breakfast. I would have a sandwich, chips, and a soda for lunch. For a snack, I would have goldfish, pretzels, and soda. For dinner, I would have meat and some vegetables. Then, of course, for dessert, and throughout the day, I would have more sugary treats.

Since becoming a vegetarian, things have gotten better, but I still do not eat salads for lunch. I know that changes need to be made, but I also know that most of my joy in life has come from the food I get to eat. One of the significant advancements in society has been making food taste good. So good that I have to run to burn off the extra calories I consume. I think about the future when the kids aren’t in the house, and I run out of excuses for keeping junk food around.

I am also not sure about the longevity of my running streak, either. I feel that I am doing it just to allow myself to eat more garbage. I have other productive streaks in my life that I could be working on. I struggle to find the time to work on my video editing. I am still fearful of putting on my creative works because even worse than people not liking them, no one will want to watch them.

Everything is not a struggle, though. I have a healthy family, and we are still doing well financially. My wife still works enough, and our net worth is growing. Thankfully, the market has not collapsed into a recession, and I don’t stress over finances. I’m sure that will change, but for now, it feels good. I accept the reality of possibly having to re-enter the workforce, but I would rather downsize in other areas first.

I hope to have another 42 years, but I am still determining what those years will look like. 

What challenges will I give myself? What adversity will I face? What should I strive for?

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