Okay. I am not old. Well, not really. Definitely not in the grand scheme of things. I have a birthday coming up in a few months that I am feeling really put off by right now. Because twice this past Friday, I was reminded that I am, indeed, getting old. And I did not like it. At all.
First, I was talking with a teacher – keep in mind that I am one of the younger teachers on staff right now – and there was a student in the room. She was talking about a sporting event and how two sophomores made it to states for this event, but that she did not (she is a senior) and one of her teammates did not, but she was at least being able to go as an alternate. The teacher that I was with mentioned that it would really stink if someone got injured and she said that we (as in the collective we) would never wish that someone were to get an injury. Then she brought up Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding. And this girl (the senior in high school) had no idea what she was talking about. I vaguely remember her asking if we were talking about Tony Hawk (because we said skating, not figure skating at first).
Now, I don’t remember the actual incident. But I remember hearing about it and I remember it being the butt of jokes and how everyone would talk about that when they were talking about sabotage. And apparently, it is no longer relevant.
The second thing that happened was at a fundraiser. We were sitting around and we had been joking with the kids that we would only be able to go to a local park that was within walking distance of our school because we had no money. The fundraiser went well (yay!) and we were joking that we could go a little farther and might be able to afford a bus now (at least one way). Then, one of the students mentioned going to a park that is still close (maybe a 20-30 minute drive) because they were supposed to go there as 5th graders but couldn’t because of Bucky Philips being loose.
I almost had a panic attack. I definitely asked out loud, in amazement and shock, whether they were really only in 5th grade. Because I was in college. I was a college student and these kids hadn’t even hit puberty yet.
And that made me aware of my age. And it made me feel old. And then it made me think about how I have a birthday coming up.
And it made me not want to have a birthday coming up. Because I am going to be older than I want to be and not have accomplished anything that I wanted to accomplish at this point. I still don’t have a full time job. I do not have a boyfriend or serious prospect right now. My friend base is pretty limited right now. And I don’t want my birthday to come. At all.
This was not supposed to turn into a post about how I’m feeling about myself. It was supposed to ask the following question. When does this feeling about being shocked about your age stop? When will I realize that things happened long enough go that there are adults that do not know about them (granted these kids aren’t quite adults yet)?