Wrestling with Approaching 29

August 31, 2015 By Tom

“check check, is this thing on?” reflecting on the upcoming birthday

I don’t normally stress about birthdays and am pretty fond of the growth as a human that has come over the last few years, but damn, I’m struggling with 29. It seems like such a definitive age, and despite all my great successes over the last year, I feel like the upcoming 13th is hanging over my head.

I’ve wrestled with the “why” on this recently, because I certainly don’t feel like I’m getting or acting “old”….hell, I just flew out to Colorado with the partner-in-crime to drive a car back in a 1,350 mile escapade this past weekend.

but we’ll forget about the intern that thought I was in my mid-thirties this summer…or at least I’ll try to forget

Work has continued to be the amazing, rewarding, frustrating, heartburn inducing, stressful, and fun adventure that I feel fortunate for every single day to be experiencing. In fact, it has me often thinking, “Can’t believe I’m alive, still not working a normal 9 to 5, and my little dream is kicking ass.”

So, with life going so well personally and professionally, why does this seem like such a threshold to cross?

I know the overhanging issue with 29 is it was Jim’s age when he was killed in The Crash. I’ve stood over his gravestone enough over the last 5 years that the July 4, 1980-June 5, 2010, are vivid in my thoughts. he was 29 days short of turning 30—something that I still remember hitting me in the gut the first time I went to the cemetery and saw those dates next to one another.

I also know that he, and his family, and everyone else that was involved in that day, would/will be frustrated to read about this self induced sentence I seem to have created for myself. It’s me totally overthinking, and while my overthinking and thinking ahead is often a skill and trait, I know it isn’t in this specific situation.

But, what has me excited about 29? It’s knowing, that if the past year has been a test run, the next year will be absolutely incredible. The deck is stacked in my favor with great personal relationships that have put amazing people in my world, a growing organization that will be able to help more youth and create additional programming, and a beautiful home in my favorite city that continues to transform to be an even better version of itself.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned over these last years, it’s to expect the unexpected and roll with the punches that come while swinging back even harder to win the fight.

So, I guess…here comes 29, whether I’m ready or not.