Holy Crap, I’m 45 Today! And Toasting with a Glass of Water

by Michael Sheehan on January 23, 2013

in General, Opinion

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I have no qualms about telling my age. In fact, most of the time I can’t remember how old I actually am. I have to plug in my birthdate into some sort of age calculator. Is that a sign of old age?

Today I turn…uh…wait, right! 45. I’m five years over the hump. 40 is the hump right? Or is it over the hill? I don’t really feel old but part of me realizes that it’s time to grow up a bit. I’m sure my wife doesn’t always like calling me her “fourth child” but heck, I figure that a youthful heart and perspective makes you younger on the outside as well.

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I have never written a “birthday post” before (or at least I don’t think I have…what was it that they say goes first? Your memory?) Regardless I figured there was no better time than at 45 to start a new tradition.

There are a few reasons why I think I want to do this. For one, its nice to have a record of what I was thinking about on my birthday. And, I believe that birthdays are good times for introspection. Honestly, I think that while people are smart making New Year’s Resolutions to change their lives in one way or another, I think it would be more personal and appropriate to do it on one’s birthday instead. Your birthday is a marking point in time to allow you to reflect about how long you have been interacting with people and things in this world and how you want to do this moving forward. Lastly, I am writing this article on my site to let people know that there really is a person behind all of the content that appears here. Not a team of industry hardened reporters or journalists…just one guy, me, a dad, HighTechDad.

I’ve decided as one of my New Year’s Resolutions, I mean Birthday Resolutions, that I’m going to write a book. In fact, the reason I started blogging was because I wanted to write a book but simply did not have the time, the means, the ideas nor the courage to do so. 7 birthdays later, that has all changed. I have over 4 decades of life experience now, with each an every moment firing up a synapse in my brain. As a collective, it makes me unique.

When I look at a glass of water, it’s neither half empty nor half full (but I do tend to say it’s “half full”), but rather, it is an ancient vessel that contains a life sustaining liquid. Who came up with the idea of the glass in the first place? How did the water get purified? What sort of a trip did the water travel to get to my glass? And by drinking it, what is it doing for me? A glass of water is much like one’s life – there are people that have made it an object and a concept, there is machinery that allows us to obtain and consume it and there is the personal decision of what you want to do with it (e.g., drink it, water some plants, throw it at someone…) Life is full of decisions and interactions and objects, all mixing together to provide a unique outcome.

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So at 45 years, I feel that my life is beginning anew. My kids are growing up. My thoughts, visions and dreams for them are starting to crystalize. I have many experiences and ideas under my belt, but that same belt is stretching under the weight of even more ideas, dreams, goals and hopefully, self-realization.

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Even my horoscope from today seems to convey this. “A new beginning…” – who doesn’t like that type of forward-thinking vision? Each birthday should be a new beginning, a new direction, a new aspiration, a new goal and a new vision. At 45, I believe that I have hit that point where it all begins to make sense. While 45 is an arbitrary age for this realization – this “vision” may hit you sooner or later in life – the important point is to recognize that each and every person is put in this world to make a difference, whether it is large or small. Your actions affect those who you care for and who care for you, as well as those outside of your physical world. Hopefully, this article has touched you in some way…and you are beyond my personal physical world.

When your birthday rolls around, whether you are 21 or 45 or 65 or 90, remember to take time to reflect. Decide what your goals and visions are for the coming year and act on them. They don’t have to be grandiose. Take that un-drunk, half-full glass of water and pour it in a plant to give it life. Hug and tell your loved ones how important they are in your life and how they form part of you as a person. And wish yourself a happy birthday in the process!

Thanks to all for the birthday wishes that have already come (and those still to come)! I wish you the same on your day of celebratory vision!

HTD says: Make those Birthday Resolutions, take time to think, and drink a glass of water in the process!

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