The thing about milestones is that they get smaller the closer you are to them.
It should seem that the opposite should be true. Typically you see something in the far distance as a blip and then it grows larger and larger as you approach it. However, when it comes to milestones in life major events loom menacingly in the future but when you pass by them they arenâ€™t so much more than a pebble in the roadway.
I think of the section of CTH D as you are heading west coming to the CTH E intersection. If you are looking ahead, the road rises. From a distance it looks menacing as if it would take significant effort to make that climb.
Yet the slope is gentle enough that you barely realize it when you have reached the crest. It makes you think there wasnâ€™t much to it at all.
A few weeks ago I marked my 24th year of working at The Star News. A half a lifetime ago when I started working here, I never expected to be around this long. Heck, I doubted I would make it five years before moving on. It is not that I havenâ€™t had opportunities, it is just more that over time, my roots in the community have grown ever deeper.
There have been many changes over that time. There have been technological changes in how we gather and deliver the news as well as changes in coworkers and the ever-changing faces of those whose stories we tell each week in the pages of The Star News. I would have been happy enough to let my anniversary date here slip by unnoticed, but for another more imposing milestone occuring a few days later.
My daughter, Elizabeth, stopped being a teenager and turned 20. This is somewhat shocking to me, because I still have a picture of her on my desk from when she was six weeks old and another from when she was toddler with a moptop of straw-colored hair.
I think it is part of being a parent that you always think of your chidren, no matter how old they are, as the child that needs you to come in their room to make the monsters go away.
As if these things were not enough, I was reminded that my son, Alex, will be entering high school this fall and has shot up like a beanstalk. He is currently about an inch or so shorter than me, but I give it until September for him to shoot past me. Considering that both my brothers were over six foot by high school his growth spurt has not come as a surprise. The other day I was going through old files on my phone and came across a video clip he sent me while I was attending a conference about eight years ago. Hearing that long-gone little kid voice had me wondering where the time had gone.
The final step as I stumble down this maudlin path of realization that I am far from being a spring chicken, was my recent eye exam where the doctor let me know it was time to make the step to bifocals.
I got the new glasses last week and have been slowly attempting to adjust to them. My wife, who made the leap a year before me, says that given time I should no longer even tell the difference.
For now, I am walking somewhat more carefully as I go down steps or when attemping to step over things. My perspectives are just a bit off, such as when I tripped over a blade of grass while cutting my lawn on Sunday morning or was walking down the steps at the courthouse.
Getting older is kind of a pain, but considering the alternatives is better than a sharp stick in the eye any day.
Brian Wilson is News Editor at The Star News.