Turning 40

Last Friday was my birthday, and it was a big one numerically.  I considered not wanting to reveal my new age in the title out of a sense of sounding old for the first time.  Age, the significance of a new decade, etc. are all constructs and arbitrary, but it’s hard to shake random beliefs we’ve had for a long time.  For me 40 was an age where people are transitioning into retirement and older age.  Perhaps it actually is for me now that I’m there.

I don’t feel like I have any less energy during the last decade (admittedly I probably had a bit more in my twenties), but I have noticed little things affect me more than they used to.  Drinking, eating junk food, and even things like not warming up properly/not being very careful with my form can all set me back for some period of time.  I can tweak my neck/strain my back without messing up too bad.  It’s just reality that I have to accept though, and preventable.  I’ve been flip-flopping around with fitness goals.  I couldn’t put my finger on what I’m looking for (I knew it wasn’t to deadlift 700 pounds, run a four minute mile, or win the CrossFit Games) until I stumbled upon a blog talking about being the fittest 90 year old (I’m paraphrasing as I unfortunately don’t remember the blog).  I’m truly looking for longevity and things I can do now to maintain as much health and fitness into old age.  I’m fortunately not too old to lift heavy stuff on a regular basis.  I thought about yoga as my primary thing, but I think there’s a lot of lifetime benefits (and necessity) to be able to pick up heavy stuff like kettlebells, pushing sleds, etc.  I’m still figuring out my ideal exercise situation, but I’ve been enjoying mixing in kettlebell training recently.

On the bright side with the new age I feel a bit wiser.  A sense of urgency.  My mantra this past weekend was “someday is now”.  All of the vague ideas and things I’ve been daydreaming about doing someday, I realized that someday is now, or there’s a good chance it’s never happening.  I’ve talked about getting back into writing countless times on this blog.  Typically by the time my next post comes out, I’ve tapped out from writing well before then.  I’ve done this so many times, I hate to even bring it up again.  Based on my past decade of history I should keep my mouth shut to save any future embarrassment.  But here I am.  

When I say writing I mean 1) this blog, but primarily 2) fiction short stories/novels.  On the fiction side I mostly read crime/noir and science-fiction.  These genres encompass most of what I’m currently interested in writing.  I think for so many people the phrase “I want to write” is hazy at best.  I’m no exception.  For me it comes from a gratitude for the way books and stories have impacted my life.  I’ve been a heavy reader since I was a child, and my life has been completely shaped by all of these books I’ve consumed.  I want to give back.  I also have always felt deep down that I have great story ideas (I’ve spent many hours falling in love with outlines I’ve created), but I haven’t done enough of the real work going from outlines to finished stories.  I have written and finished several short stories, and one very rough draft of a novel, but nothing compared to my ambitions and the amount of material I’ve brainstormed.   My failure so far basically comes down to a lack of discipline/habit for me, and needing to let go of a psychological fear of going broke.  I’ve been nervous for a long time that if I don’t keep focusing on money-making activities I’ll become valueless in society and unable to support myself.  I’ve been waiting to fall into a truckload of wealth again, then focus on writing, but it hasn’t happened on the timeline I wanted (always faster than what’s realistic apparently).  Something clicked this past weekend after my 40th.  I just can’t put off writing any longer. There are a few other things too like being more impeccable with my word, and taking my spiritual practice more seriously.  

I had a large financial goal this year for my trading to basically take me into financial retirement.  I don’t know that it’s going to happen, and I realized I can’t keep putting all of my mental and emotional energy into that.  I just don’t care as much as I used to about money.  I’ve put years of consistent work into it, and at this point it’s either good enough or it’s not.  I’ll find out with time.  

I started writing again, and I’m trying to keep the habit going daily even if it just means one sentence (I find it’s easy to keep going if I can just get started).  My goals right now are just to build a habit, and work on improving my skills.  I’m very rusty, even having a hard time doing this simple blog, but it feels good.  

Good content wise I finished the series “Sense8” on Netflix.  It’s weird and there’s probably some uncomfortable scenes for everyone, but I really enjoyed it.  It has an international cast and locations all over the world.  The characters in the show were very foreign to me (a poor African bus driver, an Indian woman marrying into a rich family, a closeted gay Latin actor, etc), and I loved that.  If you’re into weird science-fiction with a good amount of action, it’s a solid one.

I also finished the second book in the “Dungeon Crawler Carl” series by Matt Dinniman, and already halfway into the third.  These are super fun and easy to read books in the “LitRPG” genre.  The genre is something new for me.  It’s basically people placed into RPG video game situations where they get health, magic, strength, dexterity, points as they level up, they get equipment, and other geeky video game things put into real life.  In “Dungeon Crawler Carl” the scenario is aliens instantly take over the earth, and they put the surviving humans into a reality tv show video game for the rest of the galaxy to be entertained with.  Instead of using a joystick and playing the game though, the humans are in the game and able to get more powerful as they kill monsters/acquire items.  It’s life or death, so most people die as the game gets harder.  The book is really funny and lighthearted enough with lots of action to make what could be a somber situation very fun.

With that I’ll leave you with some pics from my recent life things. The first is the breakfast I woke up to on my birthday. The other pics are from Tepotzotlan/Amatlan when Johanna and I rented a beautiful house there a few weeks ago. Sending warm wishes and love.

Amazing 40th breakfast from Johanna
View from the house
Tepotzotlan street art
Pool at the house
These hammocks were awesome

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