Monday, March 16, 2015

The breakup post with Mr. 40

Dear Mr. 40:

Funny how so many people are intimidated and scared by you. I guess maybe it's because you represent a big milestone for most (middle age! partners! children! success!), but for me you were a great companion. I did have some expectations that things were going to happen; like maybe my biological clock would finally go off and I'd really search for a husband and/or have a kid; that suddenly I'd make some strange life-changing decision about career, or love and regret it--but honestly, you were great to be around.

Forty felt like I was finally becoming comfortable in my own skin; settling into my new career, still searching for a partner, enjoying life and everything around me. Maybe the biggest change was switching jobs and I'm now running and managing my own pharmacy away from the craziness of the corporate chains. It was a shock to be cold-called; it was a shock to be told I already had a good reputation; and it was a shock to be told that I was very good at what I was doing and to be wanted for doing so. I'm amazed that it's gone over so well with very few hiccups. There is a lot of hard work ahead, but I am definitely looking forward to it.

And along the way, I've met some really great guys, which have become good friends, even though I have been wanting more. The more I've put myself out there, I've met better and better guys; guys who've helped me figure out what I want in a relationship, and guys who've pointed out that I really am a good guy and deserve someone to complement me. It is frustrating, Mr. 40, that I seem to come so close to meeting someone, only to see my dreams dashed. But the bitterness that follows has become briefer and briefer, and each guy seems to be better and better. (And Mr. Biggest Fan, if you're reading this, you still have a big place in my heart. I'm not letting you go that easily.)

It's nice to know that I'm no longer dreading when each year leaves me to introduce me to another; it feels like the years are getting better and better. I know what I want, I'm ready to keep working at it, and disappointment and joy often come hand-in-hand.

Is this really what it's like to get older? To be more comfortable, to see happiness wherever I go, to acknowledge sadness for what it is? That life is meant to be appreciated no matter what happens? That the people who come into my life have really been placed for a reason?

Mr. 40, thanks for teaching me life lessons. I think Mr. 41 will be just as exciting, challenging and maybe scary as you were. But I'm realizing I'm no longer scared. I'm ready to see what happens, and excited for the opportunity.

I'm also realizing that it's kinda pointless to ask for wishes and things--it's up to me to make the opportunities to make things happen. Maybe that's the biggest thing I've learned so far.