I was having one of those 'reflecting on life then and now' moments over lunch in the tea room yesterday. The prompt for this was a Sunday supplement article.
Did you ever have a stage in your life where your Sundays were themed around whatever was the lead 'lifestyle' article in the Sunday paper? I remember those days well. I'd wake up at whenever o'clock before either making a leisurely Sunday breakfast from scratch or else going out for the same. Nestled on the table somewhere under my plate of breakfast would be the Sunday supplement opened to the obligatory commentary on the latest symptom of our fast paced, on point, multi media lives to be given an acronym. The piece would often be studded with personal experiences of said affliction in amongst the stats and professional opinions. And then there'd be 'The Box' to tie it all up neatly. By 'The Box' I mean the concluding bullet points of take home messages, practical tips and of course links to online resources.
So anyway. I'd read these articles and then drift through the rest of my Sunday either confident that I was already doing everything in my power to prevent me catching the Affluenza of the day or else idly planning to change my life along the lines of 'The Box'.
All these memories came flooding back to me as I started to read about people wanting each other's jobs aka Career FOMO and I struggled to concentrate on the article. Not because the article was poorly written but because I realised that I just didn't care. And it was a definitive I so do not care I just can't read on. I had a hard earned lunch break and thirty minutes of uninterrupted silence to savour before heading back out the door for the rest of the working day before the drive home to my full time job at home with my little monkey and his larger than life personality.
What makes you and when do you realise that you've both too old and just don't care about Sunday supplement navel gazing?
For me, it was discovering that I was able to make my own way through life with its joys, obstacles and disappointments. Not necessarily on my own but that as I grew older and (hopefully) wiser, I accumulated the friends, strategies and resources to deal with it. Because that's the point I've reached in my life. To just deal with it and move on. Holding pity parties or wishing for things to be different don't actually give you whatever you need or want.
To me, at this point of my life, wallowing in negativity, jealousy and 'what if...' is just an outrageous waste of time. All around me, friends are losing beloved parents. My precious aunties and uncles (for Chinese people this means anyone and everyone older than you who's not a blood relation, really) are getting frailer and not as up for the crazy things they used to do as they once were. They've all chilled out about the issues that used to rile them and they're often travelling the world and the country grand parenting their little ones' little ones. It's lovely to see but bittersweet for me to see the change and the defacto signs for growing older and all that this means in the world I work in.
Where is the sense in wasting the time we have with each other now on hours spent in a bubble of counterproductive self absorption?
So I turned the page, in fact, I closed the magazine after I'd pulled it out from under my lunch. Then I sat back, unwrapped my chocolate and ate it as I sipped my green tea. I don't have a fear of missing out anymore. I just fear missing. Missing time with people before it's too late.
Then it was time for me to hit the floor again. Back to my life and all the people who are part of it.
Is your care factor zero when it comes to Sunday supplement lifestyle articles? Did you ever care or was there a defining moment that made you know that you're over the overthinking?