Sometimes I get inspired early in the week and latch on, knowing *this* – whatever it is – is going to be my post here in fivenineteen.  Or I might get a couple flashes or two and jot them down for later.  And sometimes the well in the head is empty and dry…and I wonder – what in the world am I going to blog about THIS week?  Sure, I don’t NEED to write in here weekly – it’s just a rhythm I’ve developed over the past few months and I like it.  And I hope whoever is out there reading this either by accident or on purpose likes it too.  Got something you want me to blog about?  Please let me know.   

Well…today, totally out of the blue, my friend C uttered that quip in today’s title and I knew instantly that was it.

Downtime on Saturday. Let’s give the ol’ brain here a rest.  Hoo doggy it was a busy work week.  Stressed and rushed for sure – lots of virtual lint flying around with our team as we blast full speed ahead to an upcoming technology launch.  It’s 11:30pm on New Years Eve, people, are we READY???  Are we SURE??  Exhilarating but also mentally draining.  I feel like a happy yet deflated balloon when I get home from work sometimes.

I slept hard until 9:30am this morning.  I do love to sleep in but when it gets that late I feel I’m wasting the day.  But I knew my body and mind needed it.  AND I knew I had to get my ass out of bed and off to the salon for a hair color appointment.  The Starbucks drive-thru near my house was backed up with cars overflowing onto the main road (kinda sad isn’t it?) so I stopped at a grocery store’s Starbucks counter to grab my signature coffee drink – a double tall nonfat latte.  Ahhh.  You know, I am not a “gotta have my Starbucks fix” person, but I do enjoy making coffee at home on the weekends (although, not Starbucks – I prefer Forza actually).  And now that I’ve kicked Diet Coke cold turkey going on over 10 months now, thankyouverymuch, I’ve switched to unsweetened iced tea on weekday mornings for a caffeine boost while I’m getting ready for work.  Lipton has cold-brew tea bags I just love.  I just plop one into a large Pyrex measuring cup with water, put it in the fridge for a bit and voila.  I swear I used to have a decent glass pitcher but it might be buried in a cupboard somewhere.

So I felt tired and looked suburban today heading off to the salon.  I decided to wear some black corduroy leggings I found online on a total whim earlier this year and paired them with black, zippered midcalf boots. A 3 Dots long sleeved white tee, my khaki with black sequins J. Crew tank top over that and a jean jacket.  I also rocked my Prada Gauffre hobo I haven’t carried in quite awhile.  Oh boy, that bag is wonderful.  Ruched, delicious chocolate brown leather.  I wear so much black but realized this brown is dark so it can go with black just fine kindasorta.  For what I paid for it 3 years ago I really should be taking it out more often, ha ha.

After getting my hair color touched up (overall darkening of my signature blonde plus filling in the ashy brown roots that are ever increasly shot through with greys, yuck), I headed down to Orting.  Orting, Washington.  This is a small town of about 8000 or so and growing rapidly.  And right in the shadow of our famous Mt. Rainier.  What a beautiful drive to a beautiful town where a 14,400 foot mountain dominates the skyline on a clear day.  Fabulous.

I stopped by (well ‘stopped by’ after an hour drive, ha) to see my friends C and S for a quick chat and to pick up a PartyLite candle order from a few weeks ago.  Gotta restock on those wonderful votives!  C and S are so welcoming, warm and friendly.  I worked with C for several years and through him know his wife and family.  We’ve kept in touch since leaving the company we worked for and have helped eachother through the bumps of job changes with referrals and moral support. 

Their 6 year old daughter came by the kitchen several times to share things with me – her dolls, her soccer trophies, her super sparkly Halloween witch costume and on and on. Aww…I remember the buzz at work from C when he and S were pregnant with her and the joy when she was born.  And how wonderful to meet this charming girl in person!  What a sweetheart.  She also whipped up a purple paper snowflake for me with fringe trim and a purple “D” sticker on it in the middle (my first name initial).  Love it! 

Meanwhile, the 3 of us continued talking.  Sometimes I go off on verbal tangents, not knowing exactly what I’m going to say or what my point is.  Might be considered a quirk or flaw, but those that ‘get’ me can follow and respond…I think – ?  How refreshing is it to open up with those you trust about your doubts and insecurities.  How wonderful to just bounce half-baked ideas outloud in a trusted audience without feeling the risk of being skewered.  THIS I love.

So I started rambling about mental capacity and if it slows down into your 40s.  Does it?  Isn’t this supposed to be a prime decade?  Why do I sometimes feel clueless after several work conversations where everyone else seems to get what’s being discussed and I’m thinking huh??  No, that doesn’t happen all the time but sometimes I cringe or giggle on the inside and wonder.  Do I jump in and say hey what do you mean by ‘x’, get fired up to go figure it out myself or just file it away for later?  Yes, yes and yes.  Gotta make split second decisions depending.

Is this a downside of the journey into middle age?  I might be wayyy off base but the way C and S nodded their heads (and we’re all about the same age) I felt validated and a little relieved. 

Along with my eyesight and hearing not as sharp as they used to be, some weight gain and my ass dropping a few inches I feel like I’ve been dealt a sneaky hand since turning 40. 

Mental capacity?  I work amongst geniuses and powerful thinkers.  Do I/can I keep up?  Do I give off the perception that I do and contribute value to the team?  I sure hope so.  On days I have insecurity leaks I don’t feel like it, but when that happens I remember how much I HAVE learned over the years and relish the fact that everyone else is probably feeling the same way too.  I am by default a supreme self-critic, so I try to give myself a break even though the corporate work culture does not – and I don’t expect it to either.

I kept rambling outloud to C and S…is my brain frying – can I follow and keep up?  Am I losing it?  Am I feeling changes in my mental agility?

And then C piped in…”I think it’s just full.”  Meaning, the brain has no more room in the inn right now.  I died laughing.

That would have been perfect for our famous work Quote Sheet he and I used to keep on our office walls – capturing funny things people say.  Things that maybe weren’t meant to be funny but sure came out funny. 

I think it’s time to start up a new one.