How did I get here?

It’s 12:42 am on a new Monday morning, and I’m wondering how in world I got here.

Here—not New York; not my kitchen table; not into the world of writing. But here, I mean—quite literally—here; this point in my life. I am 36-years old. No longer a kid; barely a young adult. In four more years I turn 40. In 14 more years I turn 50. If I’m lucky.

Aging is such a surreal thing. I feel like I pretty much cruised through my 20s, flying around New York City on a fun merry-go-round without a ton of cares about my place in the world. But now I’m just confused. I go through life wondering who the hell are the Jonas Brothers, and when did I stop caring? Is it wrong, at my age, to notice that attractive 22-year-old hottie as she passes by on the street? Should my kids’ friends call me ‘Mister,’ as I called my parents’ 36-year-old friends? Can I still be relevant? Down? In the know? Or does it all simply come off as insincere and clownish?

In myriad ways, Facebook is my damnation. In tracking down the Michelles and Christophers and Thomases from my high school days, I am repeatedly reminded that I am no longer in high school, and that the orderly existence of so long ago is dead to me. There are no cliques; no comfortable cafeterias where I’ll recognize the same people day after day, no innocent puppy-love crushes on girls in their Friday afternoon cheerleader outfits walking down the hallways.  Like it or not, I am gradually turning into an older man. Were I a professional athlete, odds are my career would have ended four or five years ago.

So what can I do? Only one answer pops into my head.