|Sunday, June 08, 2003|
Today I turn forty-one. I feel good, like a grown-up, actually, my protracted American adolescence behind me at last. Good thing, too, since my kids are on the cusp of their own adolescences, and it helps to have an adult for a dad.
Past birthdays sometimes left me a little blue, knowing that I had blown whatever chance Iíd ever had at being an enfant terrible, boy wonder, tyro, or overnight sensation. This year Iím focused on my new goal: late bloomer. Iíve got a lot of work to do, and now that Iíve outlived the curse of potential thatís dogged me since childhood I think Iím ready to begin.
One thing Iím grateful for is that Iím apparently not going to follow the worn path toward conservatism beaten by so many people as they age. I donít mean that politically, although politics can be a manifestation of the syndrome. I mean getting defensive, pulling up the ladders, retreating into what youíve got and resenting what youíre not.
Instead I find that my thinking is growing less categorical, and my willingness to try to understand multiple truths has grown. I say Iím grateful for this because while it involves some conscious effort and learned behavior I think itís also a personality trait or a tendency of the spirit, and I think itís a gift.
Itís a long way to the Bo tree, but I feel like Iím on the path (and Iím comfortable with the knowledge that there is no path).
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