so here’s the deal: i love having a birthday. and i’m a big gifts guy, so that’s always fun. but i’m conflicted about turning 45 today — only nominally conflicted, but conflicted nonetheless.
turning 30 didn’t bug me at all — it was actually a really good thing. it gave me (i perceived, at least) more credibility with the parents of the teenagers i was working with.
turning 40 didn’t bug me at all. for whatever reason, it was all good.
but 45 brought these realizations this week:
– my life is, most likely, more than half over.
– my career is, most likely, more than half over.
– i’m shockingly close to 50; which means i’m surprisingly close to 60; which means i’m just not that far away from retirement.
yes, i realize that sounds a bit over-reactionary. and, really, it’s not like a mid-life crisis – i’m not about to buy a corvette and have an affair. really. i’m still totally going to enjoy the day today (my wife and kids have a whole surprise day planned for me — no idea what we’re doing, but i’m sure it will be awesome). and, of course, i’m only one day closer to the future than i was yesterday. i know all that stuff. 45 just feels… i don’t know… so solidly upper-middle-aged.
i’m working on a post about organizational life cycles (i’ll get it posted this week). in organizational life cycle theory, there are these nice little graphs, where the organization experiences growth through a variety of stages for a period of time. then the org reaches stability, which is a horrible place to be. stability is momentary stasis before beginning the downward slide through the decline of an organization (there are re-invention points, which i’ll write about in that post). but it feels like 45 is that “stability” point.
i’m making this all sound more dramatic than it actually is for me. i’ll just summarize this way: i’m excited that it’s my birthday; i’m not overly excited that it’s my 45th birthday. :)