Fam, when I was a kid, no way in hell I saw myself turning 50.
In fact, the closest I ever even let myself imagine becoming was 29. And I chose that age, because I was going to turn 29 in the year 2000.
You’re like, “Monice, 2000 was 21 years ago!” I know, but put yourself in my shoes.
In 1980, when I was a 11-year-old playing “Future” or as I now know it’s called “M.A.S.H” with my friends, the year 2000 was a lifetime away. So, it was fun to imagine that I would have a flying car and be living in Africa with 2.5 kids in a floating mansion and my husband Freddie (or whoever my little crush was at the time.)
It was just a game that I forgot about. Consciously. But subconsciously, I didn’t really make any plans after 29.
Yeah, you read that right, I was supposed to get married, have kids and win my Oscar all before my 30th birthday. And guess what? None of that happened. 😆
I didn’t get married until I was 32. Was not blessed with kids. And I’m still working on that Oscar.
Truth is, Fam, I’ve been winging it since I turned 29. And low key, I’ve dreaded all of my so-called milestone birthdays. Except this one.
#1 MY FIFTH GEAR FLEX: I don’t know. Maybe it’s losing my father nearly three years ago or helping nurse my cancer-surviving mom through three surgeries or persisting through a pandemic that has afflicted and taken people I love that makes this birthday different.
I didn’t have to turn 50. I didn’t have to keep fighting, keep striving, keep smiling. But for some reason, God saw fit to bless me with five decades on this blue ball and I. AM. GRATEFUL.
Look out , World, for my Fifth Gear Flex.
I’m wiser, tested and ready and I thank you GOD for blessing me this year.