I started this blog the day I turned 49. I’m a middle school teacher and I was coming off of one of the hardest years in my career. It wasn’t because it was exceptionally challenging. Kids were great. Colleagues were supportive. Community was amazing. It all just seemed so…pointless.
Physically, I was a mess. I was more than 40 pounds overweight. My clothes were not fitting well. I wasn’t even able to get up from the floor without the flailing of legs and arms and the pushing and the grunting. Most frustrating was my desire to lose weight combined with no desire to actually go easy on the eating.
Professionally, I was pretty lost. At one point I had been recognized as a guy who’s moving up. My superiors had been looking at me for the possibility of future promotions. I was working on my Masters in School Administration and was probably going to be a high school principal or maybe even a superintendent one day. But the truth was, I didn’t care anymore. Moving up had no real draw. I had no motivation. I started showing up late to work almost every day, and I mostly got away with it. Still, I dreaded coming to work and doing my job. A job I’d truly enjoyed for over 20 years.
Being a full time teacher AND an administrator, I thought perhaps I needed a change of pace. So I interviewed–and interviewed well!–for a position that required only administrative duties at another school in a different metropolitan area. I nailed it. I was just working on a way to say goodbye to the great community in which I lived and taught.
I didn’t get the job.
Spiritually, I hadn’t prayed in a meaningful way in months. My “relationship” with God was a pretty one-sided one.
And my marriage. Honestly, I was at the point where I was just marking time. I was committed for the long haul, but it was turning into a long freakin’ haul…and there was not a lot of joy.
Yep, I was in the throes of a good, old-fashioned midlife crisis. I had no stereotypical desire for a red convertible or some “side-chick,” I was just living in an existential malaise.
So the weekend after school was dismissed for the summer, I decided I was going to make some changes. I’d been living life “under the circumstances,” but as a friend told me long ago, I needed to be the circumstances.
I got a legal pad (it was already on the table–I didn’t feel like walking around looking for one) and figured I’d write down 4-5 things that needed to improve in my life. My last few summers just flew by with very little to show for it. (Darn you, Netflix!) This year, it was going to be different. This was going to be The Summer of Me.
So I wrote down 4-5 things…which became two full pages on my legal pad. And that’s how this blog was born.
The thing about many blogs is that they seem to be written by people that already seem to “have it together.” Maybe folks will think the same thing about me someday. And I hope I come to the point where I can wholeheartedly agree with them.
If anything, early readers will walk through the fire with me. Those that come later: just know that this blog isn’t simply theory. It is the journey of a guy who was sick and tired of life at 49, and wanted his 50’s to be…well….
Here’s to the journey!