You’re only as old as you feel, they say.
I’m a year from forty and most days I feel well past that. I feel it in how much my body aches and how hard it is to lose weight. Things weren’t like this when I was in my twenties.
I feel old but I also feel young.
My wife and I are a few days away from having our first biological child. I’ve been a dad as we have fostered. I’ve ran around the yard and kicked soccer balls. I’ve crawled on the floor and given piggy back rides. And then I went for the medicine cabinet to get the ibuprofen, knowing that I’d be stiff in the morning.
And yet, here we are. I’m 39 and about to hold my newborn child for the first time. I have friends my age who are the parents of teenagers. I sometimes think that’s where I should be. A newborn just might kill me.
I feel old but I’m also about to become a baby boy’s daddy. I dream of holding him, praying over him, reading to him. I dream of helping him learn to roll over, crawl, and then walk. I dream of running around the yard with him, teaching him to ride his bike, and how to throw a football or kick a soccer ball.
I’m old enough to know that it all will fly by too fast, but, Lord willing, there’s a lot of life on this earth left to live.
My body will still ache more than it did in my twenties, but I feel young as I think about being a little boy’s daddy. I’ll just need to remember to stretch extra before giving his first piggy back ride.