birthday

Turning 41 and the Aftermath: 14 Days of Reflection – Episode 6: Holy Shnikeys, I Climbed a Mountain

crimbing

28 and (mostly) fearless.

When I was 28, a friend told me about her solo trip across Africa. Seeing me blanch, she remarked, “Being alone in a strange place scares you? Maybe you need to spend 3 days alone in the desert.”

That was the exact opposite of something I’d wanted to do. Imagining the sun setting over a rocky desert sandscape, the evening winds, the cry of desert-foxes in the distance, and only me, all alone – that terrified me.

And less than a year later, that’s exactly where I found myself.

Once I was there, my backpack loaded with apricots and halva and countless water bottles, I was no longer afraid.


On day two, I climbed a mountain.

I didn’t know it was a mountain until I climbed down. The ascent had been arduous, hot, interminable, but I didn’t know what I was climbing until the other side revealed it to me in its desert splendor.

A mountain.


archiveRecently, I discovered a new feature: the blog archive. It’s a line of code you can install in your blog to create a list that readers can click and browse.

I did, and I clicked, and guess what I saw?

Blog posts. Lots and lots and lots. Way more than I could have imagined.

Some low points: the death of my uncle. High points: a Style Up that close to a thousand people read in a single day. And plenty of normal, day-to-day stuff: when to roll up blazer sleeves.

Without realizing it, I had climbed a mountain, word by word, month by month.


Tomorrow, Gabi and I depart for a weekend together. Towards the end of the weekend, I’m turning 41. And looking back over the three years we’ve been together, and the years I lived before knowing her, it’s a mountain of sorts. I’m proud of how far we’ve come together. And I’m proud of how high I’ve climbed, solo.

And sometimes, it takes looking back to see how high you’ve climbed.

Thoughts on turning 40: The Comic Conclusion

Wherein our hero turns 40 and attempts to find resolution on the complex feelings about this new decade.

For those of you who’d like a refresher…

Part 1

Part 2

And now, the main event.

All comics drawn with s Micron O1 pen on a Paperblank Journal. No corrections or erasures. Boldly, onward, I draw.

All comics drawn with Micron O1 pen in a Paperblank Journal. No corrections or erasures. Boldly, onward, I draw.

comeek v22

Line “crawl like a turtle through time” comes from poet Jay Driskell, who shared it with me in a poem around 1996.

comeek v23 comeek v24comeekfin comeek v31 cooked comeek v32 comeek v33 cooked comeek v34


Thankyou, dear readers, for joining me on this journey. I’d love to hear from you – your thoughts on important birthdays you’ve reached…or one coming down the road.

 

Turning 40: A Send-Off – Part 2.

Image

All cartoons drawn with Micron O1s in a Paperblank Journal. No corrections or erasures allowed. Boldly, onward, I draw.

Yesterday, the last day of my 30’s, I drew part one in a cartoon series about turning 40 – “Who I was, who I am, and who I’m becoming.” If you missed it, check it out.

Today, the conclusion. And if it raised any thoughts about your own birthday (if you are having a birthday any time this year), please – COMMENT below, share your thoughts, ideas, musings, and maybe a blessing for my new decade.

Happy-Birthday, Self!

 

5 year incrememnts v2

5 year pt 2


 

thought experiment


myths v3

last part v1
last part pt 2 v1


Will Evan reach resolution?

Will Evan find his new self?

Tune in tomorrow – for the existentially exuberant conclusion to “Thoughts on Turning 40!”


Okay…

I hope you enjoyed my reflections on turning 40.

Below, share your thoughts on your own upcoming (or recent birthday – if you had one this year) – wherever you may be in this journey!