Getting older we sometimes forget we have a playful child waiting to show his impetuous side. We tell that baby to stop and think of safety. Stop and think of timing. Stop and think of others. What we rarely say to that child to do is go and see if you will like that. We get set in our ways more and more as we age, and new or change become bad words. We have to really want something or want to prove something to change.
I have always been a bit of a creature of habit. I spent an entire year eating nothing but steamed rice for lunch. A different year, nothing but canned button mushrooms in garlic butter. Yet another with cheddar on toast and a sprinkling of celery salt. I’m good at habits especially the bad ones.
Few people would set out to try all thirty-one flavours in one sitting of Baskin Robbins ice cream (spoiler alert, there were thirty-two!). But to break myself of the habit of ordering maple walnut every single damn time, I had to do it. I had to prove to myself that I had been right all along ordering maple walnut and change is, in fact, evil.
I was wrong on all accounts.
Maple walnut is delicious, but not as scrumptious as Caramel Turtle Truffle. I have wasted the calories on a sub-standard flavour for a lifetime. Where else have I short-changed myself because I was unwilling to budge?
I know I’m a difficult person to live with at times because of this quality. In fact, it is the only quality my dad possesses that drives me crazy. He won’t try any new restaurants because “The food is weird.” We went to an Indian restaurant once after he told us, “Sure.” He ordered water.
I can be stubborn, and I’m not proud of it. Even halfway through an argument when I realise I can be proven wrong, I’ll refuse to budge. I am not really good at admitting fault. I will try and make restitution or express regret, but it is hard to get an ‘I’m sorry’ out of me. Truth is, as a Canadian, I say, “I’m sorry” twenty times a day to strangers for invading their personal space, or not holding the door open for them, or just being present. With all the practice, I should be a legend at saying I’m sorry. But, when it counts, I forget the words.
I am trying to be better. But trying once is not enough either. Which brings me back to ice cream as most conversations should.
As people, we have to continue to stretch our limits, try new things, and find an improvement over the Caramel Turtle Truffle again and again. We don’t have to change to grow. I think that is what I have been missing this whole time. It is not negating my morals to admit I am sorry for something I did or didn’t do. I can change and still be the stubborn asshole I have grown to love. I’m just getting more sleep and yelling less which are two things I want anyway.
My Turning 50 Like a Boss Pro Tip: Change doesn’t have to be scary if it means growth.
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