Me and my dad in Los Angeles ,1971; the year I was born and he turned 28.
Yesterday was my birthday. (Thank you, and yes, I got your gift. It was just what I wanted! But I got two of them. So I’m going to return one and use the money to buy some new shoes. But I’m totally keeping the one you gave me. I’m returning the other guy’s gift.)
I am now 42 years old. Not a huge milestone birthday; however I can confidently report there is no midlife crisis on the horizon. (I check every six months; so I’m cleared until September.)
I’m actually quite fine being in my 40s. The thing that really stands out to me is being able to so clearly remember when my dad was 42. It was 1985. I was 14. My son, Garren, will be 14 this year; so the age gap is about the same.
I think about that decade for my dad and me. Ten years of milestones or rites of passage for me, all while my dad was in his 40s.
In 1983 I started junior high school, became a deacon, and received the Aaronic Priesthood. I think I also started officially using deodorant and loved watching The Outsiders. And my dad turned 40.
In 1985 I started high school, began attending early-morning seminary, went on week-long Scouting high adventures, played on the high-school water polo team...and my dad was in his 40s.
From 1987 to 1988 I became a priest, started driving, started dating, had my first kiss, got my first and second speeding tickets, went to my first U2 concert, went on a week-long surfing trip to Ensenada, Mexico, moved to Hawaii with my family, went skydiving…and my dad was in his 40s.
1989 to 1990 I had graduated high school, started college at BYU, received the Melchizedek Priesthood, and left on a mission to Portugal…and my dad was in his 40s.
In 1992 I came home from my mission and started back up at college…and my dad was in his 40s.
I am sure my dad experienced new things and had his own life alterations during his 40s, but for an egocentric teenager, it seemed like my world changed a thousand times over, and all while my dad was in his 40s. My dad will be 70 this year; but somewhere in my mind, he will always be in his 40s. And that’s the decade I am in now. And for some reason, that is what kind of blows my mind.