Turning 50

Artist: Stanton Macdonald-Wright
Artist: Stanton Macdonald-Wright, Portrait of a Woman – 1925

I wonder how much my autism influences how I view turning 50 years old. Two days ago that supposedly important anniversary arrived at my door and placed me firmly in the center of the middle-aged.

There will be no major celebration. I just don’t have it in me any longer to pretend to like to be the focus of attention of a larger group of people. Remembering how it was to throw a party for my 40th birthday, just entrenches the dread of another such getting together for the sake of paying attention to me. My siblings and parents have expressed their disapproval, but all of them know me well enough that they can also joke about the matter.

So, 50. Hmmm. I thought I would be dead by now. In fact, I had hoped I would be. It just seems a waste to have people my age alive. That, and my depressive nature, work to make death an attractive alternative. Yet I have so very many things in my life that ought to give me a strong desire to live.

My husband is an amazingly wonderful person whose incredible patience and loving nature covers me with his goodness. My sons are also pretty neat people. Both are kind and generous while also embracing a direct approach to communication. All three of the men in my life are people I enjoy spending time with and time without.

Due to the vagaries of luck, our financial status is fairly secure. We have a home to live in that we no longer owe money to anyone on. My husband enjoys his work and I enjoy mine. Our neighbors are nice to us and we try to be nice back. Our country is well-off and has politicians that are no better or worse than politicians in many other countries.

In spite of this, I have no desire to live. Neither do I want to kill myself. I just happen to think that it makes no sense for me to live. Aaahhh, the strange nature of chemical and electrical impulses in brains.

So, 50 is no different for me than 49 or 39. There may be more experience and wisdom collected inside my head. However, all of my old struggles are still with me and those I love.

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