Aging is Awesome.

I love getting old.

Well, “old” is subjective.

But I don’t feel like a kid anymore, and I’m certainly not a young adult. In fact, most of my hair is white. Even though I keep it died black, the roots are getting brighter and brighter. After I die it, I have a subtle brown streak — which is actually a spot of very white hair underneath it all. My mother had something very similar. It was her skunk stripe, and it was next to impossible to permanently color it. We also both went grey very early on.

I appreciate every moment when I realize how naive I was when I was young, and a revel in the moments when I recognize that I am gaining the wisdom that only comes with age and life experience. I am finally able to calmly absorb criticism and get excited to learn something new. I only wish I had more time to do and learn more things. I no longer feel like there is so much life ahead of me — instead I feel as if I’m in the thick of it, and the time to really live is not only right now, but every day, always. I say yes more often. I face my fears more frequently.

I move slower, but I’m more honest with myself. I’m finally able to embarrass young people by mocking them. I wear “old lady” shoes because they are comfortable, rather than because they are fashionable. I don’t mind being silly or ridiculous in public, and laughing is more important that looking good.

That said, I find myself pulled in many directions as I fight to fit in all the things I want to do every day. Some things are obligatory responsibilities, others are an investment in my health, and the rest ignite an amazing passion within me … or maybe just because they are more fun that the alternatives. That leaves me taking breaks from blogging, even though I have always loved to write.

However ….

I have started filling my notebook with ideas again. I have been taking notes, starting drafts, talking about ideas and directions and I’ve very excited. This summer I want to talk about adventures, what I’ve been learning, how to be inspired, and how to stay safe. I will also have about a million photos and adventures to share from the French Alps in a few weeks!

More and more I have been learning and growing from the outdoor community around me, and I am increasingly and continually in awe, oozing with appreciation, and building my motivation. There is so much wonderful out there. I aim to experience as much of it as possible. Stay tuned.

Being Present

My perspective on time has been slowly transforming.

I realize this is a broad statement, and I’m not exactly prepared to elaborate. However, prepared isn’t necessarily a word that can often be used to describe me. Nope, not in a long shot. I sit here today, at my desk, feeling and yet not feeling the pressure of time, not prepared to write, not prepared for much other than eating this bowl of yogurt that is in front of me. Instead of being prepared, instead of crafting, I want to talk about my Saturday, in brief, as it comes to me.

Nothing was planned; everything was random. My partner-in-crime for the day and I got in the car with only a slight thought about where we were headed, and we improvised every moment of it. With a general direction in mind and a potential, very loose goal, we found ourselves at a photography store, a sandwich shop, some sort of equestrian jumping competition, a dusty trail, a dockside bar, a dark tavern, and a seaweed swathed stretch of beach. We ended the day with Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall.

And as I lazed around on Sunday, reflecting, I came to realize that there are absolutely moments in life when time is not of the essence — there are moments in life when it is sheer ecstasy to forget about your watch, stop looking at the clock, and not worry about what time it is and when you should be doing what. I always assumed those moments came only during my wilderness adventures, but I’ve learned they can occur anywhere.

And I’ve certainly learned that they can and should occur whenever possible. I look back at my weekend of urban adventures very fondly. There is so much joy to be able to forget about everything aside from what is before you; to give over all of your attention to the moment that you are in right now; to give wholly to the experience you are having — to be present. 

If you are like me, you might dwell all too often; you might even experience far too much anxiety about the future. It is easy for me to be lost in my own thoughts, often missing so much of this very moment. Go forth, dear reader, and be present. Never forget that there are beautiful moments all around us.