Thanks to my sweet boss, I had a pre-birthday lunch celebration with my colleagues at the Lake Club. The food was so delicious and the company was really great. It is nice to be able to interact with colleagues on a social level and find that apart from official matters, we have much in common.
When the lunch was over, one of my colleagues asked me what it meant to me to be 50. I was stumped for a couple of seconds. Although I did reply, something insignificant, almost immediately, his question did set me thinking a bit more about it.
So what does being 50 mean to me?
Physically: I think I look okay. Many have told me that I still look great. Okay, admittedly the body could be in better shape. However, I enjoy good health. I am not so out of my mind as to think I can pull off wearing a tight body hugging lycra outfit. I believe I dress sensibly and comfortably. I still look good in some outfits.
Emotionally: I’ve come a long way, for sure. I see life and love differently. I don’t take people or anything for granted. I enjoy living and I make the most out of it. I have learnt to be happy even when there is sadness around me. I believe that I am quite strong emotionally.
Intellectually: I realise that being 50 doesn’t mean I know everything. I don’t. I do know that there’s still so much more to learn. There’s a lesson in every meeting, every encounter and every situation. Anytime is a good time to be stimulated intellectually. Age is no barrier if the will is there.
Sexually: Hmmmm. Hmmmmm. Who said it’s the end of the road when you turn 50? Don’t you believe it?
Financially: To have been working since I was 19 has given me some sort of stability. I know it’s not what makes life count. However, it is an intangible “reward” to be able to look back with some pride, at having been able to fend for oneself.
In a nutshell, being 50 is no different from being 20 or 30 or 40. It’s just that, for me, I had looked forward to this day for a long time. Why? I don’t exactly know!
Maybe for me, it’s like a checkpoint. Somewhat like when I go to Singapore. We go through the Tuas Checkpoint to make sure everything is in order. So being 50 was my checkpoint. To see if I’ve done what I had set out to do in life. If not, to get back on track. It’s also to see if I’ve made my life count. Not really by anything global but by the thousands of little good deeds here and there and everywhere. Plus it’s a great time to check the relationships that need mending and tending. Being 50 is just as good a time as any to do that.
Over the last 50 years, I’ve been terribly sad but I’ve also been deliriously happy. What I remember most from those years is the good times. It’s the memories that keep me grounded. It’s the love and support of family and friends that keep me going. It’s the only reason to celebrate life and living.