I turned 39 a couple of weeks ago and since then, I've been depressed. I hate admitting it, even to myself. I don't have anything against my birthday, or being 39 particularly -- I am a big fan of birthdays (even though I can't ever remember them) and I have no desire to be younger than I am. Some birthdays, though, hit me hard.
When I turned 23 I realized that time was moving forward. That had been a spectacularly awful year (I had been very much in love with someone who was very much not in love with me). There is a line in High Fidelity, "Only people of a certain disposition are frighten of being alone for the rest of their lives at the age of 26. We were of that disposition." I was 23 and very frightened. When I turned 27 I realized I was only ever going to get older. It was an odd feeling, not bad really, just odd.
This year, though. It seems to have hit me hard that my biological clock is timing out and I'm finding myself grieving. I know women have children into their 40's, and certainly that is still a possibility for me, but it isn't what I wanted. Not for myself, and not for a child. I didn't want a child to be stuck with a tired, crabby mother, especially because Len wouldn't necessarily be much of a refuge. Len would be a wonderful father in many ways, but he can be just as crabby, tired and depressed as me (but more fun, there is that).
Part of what I regret is how little control over the direction of my life I took. I let things happen, or not happen, for better and for worse. Mostly I'm happy with where I have landed: a job I don't hate, a house in the country with someone I love very much, time to knit and weave. But I can't help but feel that there has been a price to pay.
And of course. This all so petty. My mother has a close friend who's teenaged son was killed early this week. Any stupid feelings of regret I have pale in comparison to the horror she must be going through.