Happy birthday: You are now officially old

Celebrating my 3-year-old birthday party in Leavenworth. Sporting my cast from when I broke my arm falling off a toy bike in my driveway. Good times.
Celebrating my 3-year-old birthday party in Leavenworth. Sporting my cast from when I broke my arm falling off a toy bike in my driveway. Good times.

I generally am indifferent about birthdays, but I was filling out an online survey recently and came to the end where it asks what age group you fall into and suddenly it struck me: I’m changing groups.

Man, do I suddenly feel old.

No longer am I associated with people in their 20s. Nope. Now I’m bunched in with the old codgers in their 40s.

What age group identifies you?

>> 0-14

>> 15-24

>> 25-34

>> 35-44 X (welcome to middle age)

>> 45-54

>> 55 and above

Easter Sunday is a special occasion in our household, and we took a family photo every year. Upper left is with my Grandpa and Grandma Craker in 1985 in Leavenworth, upper right is with my family in 1986 in Leavenworth, and the bottom is in Kirkland in 1991.
Easter Sunday is a special occasion in our household, and we took a family photo every year. Upper left is with my Grandpa and Grandma Craker in 1985 in Leavenworth, upper right is with my family in 1986 in Leavenworth, and the bottom is in Kirkland in 1991.

The thing that is funny, though, is I actually feel younger now than I did five years ago. I think part of that is because I quit smoking, and part of it is that I’ve actually been trying to eat healthier for the first time in my life. I eat vegetarian sandwiches now, I’ve cut back on my dairy intake drastically, it’s been at least four years since I had a soda pop, I eat cucumbers and bell peppers for snacks now, etc. (though I’m not giving up my pizza and ice cream).

I also have been doing a lot more hiking and going for walks since moving to Western Washington. And having a toddler forces me to be on my toes constantly.

All of that combined has made it so I certainly don’t feel all that old. And in reality, 35 isn’t exactly that old, though I remember when I was in youth group in high school I thought the parents of my friends were ancient – and they probably weren’t all that much older than I am now.

My wonderful mother, who looks pretty annoyed about having a screaming baby in her lap in the lower left, put together this amazing baby book for me to chronicle my growing up years. We started one for our daughter, but this blog has pretty much replaced it.
My wonderful mother, who looks pretty annoyed about having a screaming baby in her lap in the lower left, put together this amazing baby book for me to chronicle my growing up years. We started one for our daughter, but this blog has pretty much replaced it.

Anyway, I guess part of it is perspective, and part of it is how you choose to live your life.

So, despite the fact that I turned 35 on Sunday, I’m choosing to identify myself this way:

What age group identifies you?

>> 0-14 X (some days my humor puts me in this group)

>> 15-24 X (some days, my thinking I know everything about everything and then being wrong puts me in this group)

>> 25-34 X (some days, when I snap awake on short sleep and feel I can conquer the world puts me in this group)

>> 35-44 X (life)

>> 45-54 X (I don’t know what categorizes this group; maybe those rare times I’m mature)

>> 55 and above (nope, not checking this one yet!)

– Craig Craker

My dad is announcing that we're No. 1, or that I'm 1-years-old.
My dad is announcing that we’re No. 1, or that I’m 1-years-old.

 

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