“I’m such a late bloomer, I’ll never die.”
I was what people politely referred to as a late bloomer. I was short and skinny and had the figure of a ten-year-old boy.
I didn’t have my first kiss until I was sixteen, and that was a sympathy kiss orchestrated by my best friend.
I didn’t have my first boyfriend until I was in college, and I married him.
I was socially awkward and painfully shy.
My career took a circuitous route because I got married after my second year of college. I graduated college a semester later than originally planned. I started law school a year later than I thought.
When I graduated from law school, I was pregnant with Sweetness. That delightful surprise delayed my law practice for two years.
The time I spent at home with Sweetness when she was a baby is precious and irreplaceable. In the long run, what I perceived as a delay to my career is irrelevant.
When I started my law practice, I looked at least seven years younger than I really was.
When I was pregnant with the Genius three years later, little old ladies tut-tutted me. They were sure I was a poor little teenager who’d gotten pregnant. I don’t think they believed my assurances that I was a thirty-year-old, married attorney.
At forty-six, I’m old enough to realize life is circuitous. We rarely move from Point A to Point B without detouring by Point G, around Point Z, and over Point F along the way.
My friend Martha regales me with her own tales of late blooming. She wanted to go to law school in 1983. She finally earned her doctorate of jurisprudence twenty years later, after attending law school at night while working full time for a title insurance company.
One of her favorite quotes is, “It’s never too late to be what you might have been.” And she doesn’t just post it on her Facebook wall. She lives it as a shining example to the rest of us.
Somewhere along the way, when I really wasn’t paying attention at all, just living my life to the fullest, the funniest thing happened. I bloomed!
I’m dating more in my forties than I ever did as a teenager. And I love every minute of it! I am having more fun than I imagined was possible.
I’ve taken the concept of “fake it ’til you make it” to new heights. I’ve spent the last eighteen years pretending I’m not shy. Somewhere along the way, it went from pretending to being. Now when I tell people, in all earnestness, that I am shy, they laugh like I’ve told them the funniest joke!
Let’s hear it for the late bloomers! I wish I could go back and visit that waiting-to-bloom teenager. I’d tell her that life gets better and better the older you get. I still haven’t reached my pinnacle!
I’m not as confident as Martha that I’m such a late bloomer that I’ll never die. But I am absolutely convinced I’m going to die a happy, sassy old lady. I’ll be the one gleefully leading a yoga class, regaling everyone with my wild adventures and proudly proclaiming my advanced age!
Question: Were you a late bloomer or an early bloomer? How do you think that impacted your life?