jdeena

Never settle for what is…come tomorrow it will be what was

Tag: age

Age IS Just a Number

Everyone has heard the saying “age is just a number.” Usually it’s someone younger saying it to justify their actions that are deemed too adult. Or an older women uses it as a defense when dating a younger man. Or, in my case, when a guy who is ten years younger than me tries to pursue me. But this post isn’t about me; not entirely.

One of my guy friends turned 40 this past Saturday. Granted, in most people’s lives, this would be cause for celebration. You have established a career, you have a great circle of friends and family, and you are content. I was browsing Instagram and Facebook and noticed no one had wished him a happy birthday. So I text him wishing him a wonderful birthday and many more healthy years to come. His response was less than enthusiastic. And I knew it would be, because I knew he felt he was missing something he should have had by his 40th birthday: a wife and kids.

Now, my friend is handsome (despite his protests that he isn’t), he’s VERY smart, accomplished, involved in the community, and respected by many. I have know him for ten years and he has always been there for me. Seeing him upset by this upset me as well. Why? Well, because I know where he is coming from. For males, it is more accepted that they get married and start a family later. For females…not so much. But my friend feels that even he has pushed the limit. The thing is, he is SO amazing that it boggles my mind as to why no girl has snatched him up yet. Granted, he is a bit picky, but so is everyone.

After our brief text exchange, I concluded by telling him he has so much to be thankful for. His life is fulfilling and rich with purpose. If nothing else, he should be proud of those accomplishments that most people need a lifetime to achieve.

Later on in the day, I started thinking. It seems that my friend was feeling that he was missing something, but only because of his age. Had the two not been linked, I’m sure he would have been happy to celebrate his birthday. (He actually deactivated his Facebook so no one would know, and ignored all his friends’ phone calls and texts). The fact that he was 40, an age which most guys would have a family established, and was still single himself must have tugged at his heart. If there was anything I could do to convince him of his worth, I would have. What bothered me the most was the fact that he was consumed with the one thing missing in his life to appreciate all that he DID have.

If society doesn’t place an emphasis on age in regards to anything we accomplish, then no one would ever feel inadequate. People expect you to graduate college by 22, get married at 24, and have a child shortly after. When you don’t follow this timeline you are now viewed as a pariah. When I quit school 8 years ago to pursue my work in sales, everyone gave me the “that’s so sad” look when they heard I didn’t graduate college. But what we all need to remember is that life isn’t so perfect all the time. Sometimes the career comes before the degree. Sometimes marriage comes after 30. Sometimes kids come after 40. To me, whatever makes YOU happy should determine when you do things.

Right now I’m 31, bordering on 32. When I turned 30, I was single. I was working my hourly sales job after stepping down as a manager. As much as I wanted to sulk, I didn’t. Because at 30, I had been afforded opportunities most hadn’t experienced yet. I was loved. I had a wonderful family and group of friends supporting me. So what if I was 30 and didn’t have a husband or kids?

Am I the only one who sees no importance in being married? To be so accomplished across the board and then be missing just that last puzzle piece should not make you feel incomplete. Focus on what you DO have going for you. Don’t dwell on the one thing that is taking a little longer to make its way to you. If you do, you’re going to miss out on all the great things life has handed you. Enjoy your life now.

Too Attractive?

The other day while I was browsing Facebook, I came across a status one of my friend’s had posted. It was a quiz she had taken titled: “Why am I still single?” Her results concluded that she was still single because she was “too perfect.” Out of curiosity, I clicked on the link to see what it would say. The questions were easy to manipulate; that is, if you want it to conclude that you are “too” something or other, you answer it the way you think it should be answered. I was honest in my answers because I really was curious to see what my outcome would be.

The result was: “You are too attractive.”

I laughed.

Not because I don’t think I’m attractive (and I am not conceited by any means but I know I am not ugly), but because how could that be a reason as to why I am still single? I see plenty of pretty people get married or are in a relationship. But then, when I discussed this with a friend of mine the other day, she agreed with the quiz. She told me that many guys are usually intimidated by just ONE of the following: beauty, brains, and independence. The fact that I carry all three intimidates men so that they are afraid to approach me, feeling that they aren’t good enough. I started at her in shock; is that really true? Can a guy be THAT intimidated by my looks? I am constantly getting compliments on my skin, my figure, my smile, my eyes…from both men and women. But to be honest, I get tired of all that attention. It might seem like I am tooting my own horn, but I honestly have never seen myself in that way. Until recently, I always had to win guys over with my personality. They’d tell me I was cute, but that was the extent of it. So what changed?

I’m not sure when it happened, but in the last few years I’ve started not to care. I don’t care about having the perfect figure, I don’t care about looking like the actresses in Hollywood, and I don’t care whether or not people like my style. What I do now is for me, and me alone. I have never changed anything about myself for a guy. And when a guy came along and tried to do that, I kicked him to the curb. So maybe it’s my confidence that has made me so attractive. Maybe it’s the fact that I have fallen in love with myself and I make myself happy that attracts guys to me. I don’t shy away from my imperfections; I embrace them. I treat myself right, I take care of my body, and I find hobbies and interests that stimulate my mind.

So maybe that’s what being attractive means? I’m really not sure. All I know is that this can’t be the excuse for guys to not approach me. How insecure must you feel to be intimidated by looks? I am friendly to everyone; you have an open door to get to know me. I don’t have a “type;” whatever guy matches me intellectually and emotionally is good enough for me. I know there are girls out there who ruin it for the rest of us. A guy has a bad experience with one of them and he is forever scarred. Still, if I’m willing to get back on the proverbial horse, the guy should put forth the same effort.

I’m not sure what else to say. Guys, if you’re waiting for me to become less attractive, you’re going to wait for a while. I am at the peak of my life right now. I am healthy, happy, and loving the relationship I have with myself. They always say if you want to find love, you must first love yourself. So now that I have that accomplished, I’m waiting for the right guy to show up and love me for who I am. And if you think that because I know you are intimidated I will let myself go now, you are sadly mistaken.

This is who I am. Take it or leave it.