First of all, my son doesn’t play soccer. He plays baseball. It’s the middle-aged thing that tends to derail me sometimes. I remember in my early 20’s, when I started in marketing research, we used to have age restrictions for survey participation. I thought 60 was so old. When I was 30, I mourned the end of my young-and-free years. When I was 40, I was locked into a career that wasn’t making me happy anymore, but the die was cast. It was too late.
Now I’m almost fifty. I like to think I face life challenges head on, but I do have that initial hesitance. I’m a middle-aged soccer mom. I can’t run a marathon/climb Mt. Everest/wear a 2-piece bathing suit.
I went on a beach jaunt with some of my dearest friends. The kind that never lie to you. The ones that love you enough to tell you not to ever wear those jeans again. They took me to a bathing suit shop and gave me a makeover. I haven’t worn a 2-piece suit since I was 6. I now own two. I know they wouldn’t have let me walk out of the store, let alone on a beach if I looked like an idiot. I just didn’t think of myself as someone who could wear a bathing suit like that.
After all, I’m a middle-aged soccer mom.
I have some wrinkles, and gravity has taken its toll. Underneath the dye, my hair is pretty gray. I also ran four miles this morning.
I had a business career, which I took as far as I wanted to go. Yes, I had a son to take care of, and yes, managing a two-career family was hard, but I’d already managed both for years. That life had run its course.
I’m only middle aged. That’s half a lifetime left. And I don’t have to spend any of it learning to walk, or talk, or even worse, learn derivatives. I have a half-life of experience– all leading up to right now. I will not climb Everest, not because I’m too old, but because I have no interest in doing so. There are many things, however, that I want to accomplish, and this half-life has just begun. So look out.
After all, I’m a middle aged soccer mom.
Words by J. B. Everett
Photograph – “Soccer Mums” by Ingo Bernhardt © 2009 Creative Commons