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Reflections on Turning 30

When I turned 20, a friend of mine said I was lucky to still be alive.

His exact words were,

“Luck to the next 20.”

Well, now I’m 30.

And you might call it luck,

I guess.  I could think of some other words for it.

But here I sit.  Some things have changed.

Some things have not.

I still use the same font.  I still think like I’m 23 years old.  I still love cats and hip hop.

I don’t still grill chicken with English muffins and peanut butter.

I don’t write spoken word. I write quantitative clinical psychology research articles.

I don’t play the drums anymore.  I went back to Jiu-Jitsu this year but immediately hurt my shoulder.

I don’t still lift weights 6 days a week.  I don’t take workout supplements;

creatine, caffeine, beta alanine, taurine, DiArginine Malate, Citrulline Malate, BCAAs, whey, casein.

In fact, I hardly make it to the gym.  I make music now.  I teach meditation now.

I’m still in love with the stars.  I still want my ashes spread in the Pigme Redwood grove in Big Sur.

I now care about the planet.  I care about you; so, so, much.  It’s actually hard to put into words

how much I care about you.  I’ve seen things that have changed me forever.

I know we’re the same.  I forgive you.  Believe it or not.  Really, I have.

I’m hoping too that you can forgive yourself..

I have a cat now.  I love her more than words.  She’s like me.

She loves her alone-time but needs to be held sometimes.

I’ve learned her language and we talk now.

I don’t go to therapy anymore.  I haven’t been in several months now.

I haven’t blogged in probably a year.  My apologies to those that follow me.  Things will change.

I stopped getting Muscle and Fitness magazine,

although I taught a case manager at work how to do a proper squat today.

I’m a pretty good therapist, I think.  My clients love me.  And I tend to love them.

(Don’t tell anyone.)

Doug is dead.  Overdose.  I’m still crying.  I’m still angry.  It’s still hard.

I’m still scared to talk about it.  I wrote a song about it.

A.J. won’t return my calls.  I still haven’t talked to Stu or Gabe in years.

Kev and I are cool though.  I seem him regularly and that’s my brother.

I’m still scared of growing up; still scared of dying without doing the right things.

I still don’t know what the right thing is.  And I’m still a bit impatient.

I can dance now!  Oh boy do I dance!  No more paralysis.  No more hiding.

I’m okay being out in front.  I’m okay knowing that you’re looking.

I’ve lost some friends.  I’ve gained some friends.

I allow myself to love and be loved.  I’m walking through fears now.

I still wear Sauconys, and still keep them arranged in a very specific way.

I still have to double check the stove and the car lock.  I still make the clicking noise with my tooth.

I still read Mary Oliver.  I still read Jack Kerouac.  I still read Dostevsky.  I still go to Big Sur.

I’m going back to Thailand and Bali.

I still hate doing laundry.  I still love making people happy.

I’m now accountable; responsible.

I’m not as scared of death as I used to be.  I still flirt with Nihilism.

I’m still morbid.  But I keep that secret.

I don’t litter.  In fact, I may have picked up your litter before.

I feed the homeless now.  I volunteer my time now.

I’m still crazy.  And I still love it.  I’m still the funniest person I know.

But I’m also the person I’m the most sick of.

I’m learning to hold contradiction.  I’m learning to hold the yearning for life

and the desire for non-existence.  I’m broadening the scope of what I can hold.

This year, I’ve been with a Hindu guru at an Ashram,

an influential Buddhist meditation teacher,

a combat veteran with severe PTSD,

suicidal and chronically depressed survivors of substance abuse,

a beautiful meditation teacher with a complex trauma history,

a psychiatrist specializing in the brain and attachment,

a professor at the Center for Psychoanalysis,

a man who survived cult and ritual abuse.

I’ve had a patient commit suicide.

When I turned 20, a friend of mine said he was surprised that I was still alive.

His words exactly were,

“Luck to the next 20.”

Well, now I’m 30.

And you might call it luck,

I guess.  I could think of some other words for it.

But here I sit.

The book of my life has been a page-turner.

Each chapter,

a new incarnation….

Luck to the next 30.