37. Holy shit. Pardon my profanity, it’s just that…37. Honestly, I never expected to live this long. I very nearly did die at 19 when I attempted to commit suicide. And when I think of the 18 years I almost missed, I thank the universe that I didn’t.
37. There’s this passage from the manuscript I’m working on that really resonates with how I’m feeling right now. It goes:
The scariest things in life aren’t crazy, inbred, hammer-wielding psychos or burned men with razors for fingers or machete-carrying mama’s boys. Life’s truest horror is the door that slams shut behind you and can’t ever be opened again.
That door, the door to my life, nearly slammed shut 18 years ago. I like to think that I’ve made the most of those years since then, but I know I’ve squandered a few. Not all. I did learn some lessons. And I’d love to say that each of those 18 years has been filled with life-changing beauty and limitless wonder, but there were some really crappy years mixed in there. Heartbreak and confusion and (at times) lots of drinking.
But the truth is that I’m turning 37 tomorrow. And I’m living the life I always dreamed of. In the span of 2 years, I will have published 3 books and an anthology. I have a wonderful partner, a quiet but excellent life, fantastic friends, and a supportive family. Sure, everything’s not roses. I’m a little fatter than I want to be, a little more reclusive than I should be, and insomnia is kicking my ass lately, but at the end of the day, there are no doors shut behind me, and limitless doors still open in front of me.
37. I wish I had a time machine so that I could back and show that stupid, scared, 19-year-old kid sitting on his dorm room bed about to take a bottle full of pills what his life is going to become. I wish I could show every scared kid out there the endless possibilities of their lives, and then beg them not to shut that door.
37. Damn…I’m old. Thank god for that.