I think I can remember every day of the last 365 days. As each day passed, it brought me that much closer to the big Five O. I tried just about every possible spin I could to make it easier to swallow. “Well so-and-so is fifty too.” I would feel better for a bit until I read somewhere, “So-and-so, is looking great for 40!” What? Forty? How were they supposed to look at 40? What about 50 then? Are they supposed to look like crap? I’m doomed!
Well today is D-Day. The day I dreaded for years. I am from the Caribbean where one’s age is taboo to talk about. It was easier to get money from your parents than to get them to tell you their ages. So quite understandably, I wasn’t about to yell it on the rooftops that I was turning 50.
With some positive thinking and help from my wife and sons, today, as I enter another era, I am able to accept and embrace my milestone. I have accomplished a lot of things that gave me varying degrees of happiness and I am healthy. In fact, I am one of the youngest 50 year olds I know! Let’s look back at some of my big moments, shall we?
Family – I hit the jackpot when I met and got married to one of the greatest human beings I’ve ever met. And who said lightning never strikes twice? Well they lied, it struck three more times in the form of three of the most wonderful, smart, funny and pride-inducing kids that I’ve ever met. That right there would surely have been enough for a lifetime of happiness.
Calypso King – On my first attempt, I won the title as Winnipeg’s Calypso King, beating out a field of accomplished singers to do so. I was able to use this experience to become the city’s main local Calypso/Soca entertainer and have been a regular performer at Soca/Reggae Festival and Folklorama, plus many other local shows. I have shared the stage with the Mighty Sparrow, the Calypso king of the world and one of my boyhood idols.
Poet – I write poems from time to time but when Haiti was devastated by a big earthquake, I used my writing to pen a poem of encouragement. That poem found its way to many Haiti vigils held around North America and was even read at the prestigious Cornell University in New York.
Movie Extra – As a regular movie extra, my kids got to see Daddy in family movies such as Beethoven. My biggest moments came when I played Samuel Jackson’s photo double and worked in close proximity to the legend. I was also up close and personal with Hockey star Jonathan Toews in a Canadian Tire commercial.
Christian – I can’t leave that out as getting baptized was also one of my greatest moments. I am happy to say that I am still a practicing Christian and sing regularly with the Praise and Worship Team.
I am blessed to be 50 and able to play a game of soccer or street hockey with my boys. Looking around, most men my age don’t evenlook my age!