Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Wiser, Not Older

I heard the perfect song for me on the way to the physio this morning - Taylor Swift's 22. 'I don't know about you but I'm feeling 22' - 22, and not the 50 that I've just turned TODAY. Fifty sounds kinda old and I really don't feel an awful lot older than I did in my twenties - wiser maybe, but not older.

50? Me? How did that happen?

So today, because I can't give you all cupcakes, I'd like to share some of the wisdom that I've collected on my way to this venerable age.

1. A sense of humour will get you through the tough times and make the good times even better.

I still think farts are funny. In fact anything to do with body functions can be hilarious. Taking yourself too seriously  can make your life miserable. Being able to laugh at your own idiosyncrasies is important to your mental health. I love that my kids bought me this card and knew that I'd think it was hilarious.

2. Own your crazy. 

I'm totally convinced that all of us have at least a little smidgeon of crazy in them. Some people tuck it down deep in side and it rarely sees the light of day. I like to wear mine as a badge of honour. Yep, I've struggled with anxiety at times through my life. I've had to be wheeled around an airport in a wheelchair because I'd been vomiting because I was so nervous. I've thrown up before races, exams and important sports matches. I've driven with a vomit bucket in my lap to one of my son's athletic events because I was nervous for him. But I've pushed through and done things despite my stupid nerves and this makes small things like being able to fly without the use of drugs something to be proud of.

3. Running makes everything good.

I know I'm mostly preaching to the converted BUT there is very little that running doesn't improve. You sleep better, can eat more, have less stress, meet the world's nicest people, get to travel to interesting places to sweat, have better mental health, get to throw interesting comments (yes, I've just run 36k before breakfast because I'm training for a marathon) into conversations with complete strangers and wear really great shoes that are actually comfortable.

4. Things will get better. 

There have been some times in my life when problems have been so intense that I haven't been able to see past them. Time and patience has generally always gotten me to a better place. And getting through the tough times has taught me lessons in perspective, tolerance, understanding and contentment.

5. Being kind makes the world a better place.

Lending a hand or an ear to someone who's in need. Opening a door for another. Making a meal for someone who's sick. Giving a little bit of yourself gives you so much back.

6. There are worse things in life than stretch marks. 

Being perfect was always my goal and it took me years to realise that it was ridiculously unobtainable and a huge waste of energy. I spent so much time trying to be perfect that I didn't have any fun. If I could have a do-over of my life that's the thing that I'd most like to fix. I didn't know then what I know now - that being a normal, flawed, imperfect person with a little touch of crazy, is way more attractive to other people.

I'm not planning on any big party to celebrate this milestone. I'm going to do what I really enjoy - catch up with my friends over breakfasts and coffees and enjoy their company. If I'm lucky I might manage to stretch to a birthweek instead of just a birthday.

I might not be able to give you a cupcake but at least I can tease you with one.


  1. All of the above are very true. Happy Birthday!

  2. awesome post...and HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!! yay!!

  3. 50 is the new 35 and you don't look old enough to be ether, so party on girl, and yes take a full week...

    But remember, the more you party the more you are going to have to run that cake off...

  4. Happy birthday!!! You look great!!

  5. Happy Birthday.

    I am 50 and I am definitely feeling older. Although, not so much wiser.

  6. Happy Birthday, my friend!! I will be joining you in the 50 club next month - so pass along any tips between now and then so I don't end up slitting my wrists. You look fantastic and have such a great perspective!! I hope I can drum up some of the same wise words of widsom on my 50th. Have a fantastic day!!

  7. Happy 50th, Char, and thanks for this post! Thanks for the virtual cupcake - luckily those have very few calories - LOL!

  8. Happy Birthday! You are only as old as you feel. I'm also joining the 50 club this year.

  9. Congratulations Char. Hope you had a fabulous day.

  10. Happy, Happy, Happy Birthday, Char! You rock! And that is a list that everyone should print out and put on the refrigerator!

  11. Happy birthday! I enjoyed this post and nodded my head throughout. I do love the wisdom that comes with age and you seem to have plenty of it judging by this sage advice!

  12. Happy Birthday! You look fabulous in that photo. I look to your blog for the voice of experience and wisdom... and the stuff about bodily functions of course.


    Second, great post and great way to think about things.

    Third, you leaking TOTALLY FABULOUS my dear! I hope I look that great at 50!

  14. Happy Birthday Char!!! Hope your day was a great one!!!

  15. Sorry I am a little late to the party but HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY Lovely Lady! I hope you had a day as fabulous as you are! Perhaps you gave yourself a birthday gift and signed up for the Melbourne Marathon!? *wink wink* I got my registration in for the half yesterday :)

  16. ps. 50? Pffft... You are looking fabulous! If I can look even half as good at fifty I will count myself as a lucky ducky!

  17. The happiest of birthdays to you Char! I can't believe you're 50. I remember you in your 30s!

  18. Happy birthday! Your first two points make you the perfect third grader! 50 sounds young to me. This is my year to hit the next decade. I can't quite type the number.

  19. Oh! Happy birthday! I missed the actual day - sorry about that (slept most of yesterday as I have a killer sore throat. Again!).

    You look AMAZING for 50 (though it most certainly IS the new 30!).

    You know what irks me about Taylor Swift? I read somewhere she made $58m last year. What?????

  20. Nice Cupcake :) You do not look 50; I think our perception of 50 might be changing because its the new 35 :) Keep up that healthier lifestyle! it looks good on you!

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