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  • Writer's picturemaggiehsmith07

Mining My Shit for Gold

Yesterday, while we were at a brewpub, Andrea caught sight of herself in the bathroom mirror where her gray hair, winking at her from atop her head. It seemed to catch her off guard as signs of aging tend to do in places that are well-lit.

Tomorrow is my birthday and I’m heading into the last year of my 40s. This is what surprises me. Today, we had (thanks, Andrea) VIP passes to Tegan & Sara. And one of them (Tegan) remarked how, basically, we will all feel as young as we do in 20 years. She meant mentally - I believe. Because I know my hips were not this tight 20 years ago. And I hadn’t even considered visiting a chiropractor then. Blink. Poof. Hello, 49.

I’d like to mention we were not the oldest people with VIP tickets. But, as Andrea pointed out, she couldn’t have afforded VIP tickets when she was young. Good point.

Besides my stiff hips and Andrea’s gray hair, there are other signs we are aging. Like how today Andrea observed, “I like that people wear what I wear to bed out in public.”

Recently, the Wall Street Journal reported that 42 is the age when most American’s begin to feel old & notice physical signs of aging.

I wonder when it is that we begin to feel wiser? I’d like to believe I’m wiser - although, I’m prone to relapses in a way I believe we all are.

I’m not one to buy overpriced concert merchandise but tonight I purchased a ball cap at the concert with a lyric from, Under My Control, that says, I should start working on myself again.

I feel that - I feel we should all be working on ourselves all the time because we’re fucked up and life is hard and working on yourself can help with both of those.

But I feel I’m entering a season of growth - at least I hope I grow. That’s the goal. I think when we need guides when we want to grow, and I feel fortunate to have connected with some new (to me) guides and reconnected with others. A guide can be a book, or a structured journal, a therapist, or a coach. If you’re a grown assed person, a guide cannot be your spouse. It has to be someone who will unabashedly call you on your shit. If you don’t believe you have any shit, please allow me to play the role of your guide for one moment: Yes. You fucking do have shit. We all have shit. And working on it is hard and takes time. But - it’s worth it. Working on yourself is like mining for gold. Imagine shit in a pan as if you’re mining for gold. Gross, right? Yes. You may get shit on yourself in the process. It’s  messy and stinky. But sometimes, in the process, you discover small nuggets of gold. And that’s what you polish - it’s like rock tumbling - the process that you can do at home to polish and smooth rocks.

So - as I enter this new season, autumn and the last year of my 40s, I’m gonna spend some time mining my shit for small, sharp nuggets of gold that I can smooth and polish.

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