Over the hill.

When my dad turned 30, we had a big party at my Nanny’s house. It may have been a surprise party, I don’t remember. I do remember the phrase “over the hill” written on napkins and black balloons. I think there may have been black jellybeans- which my dad just so happens to actually like. Not quite six, I remember being perplexed by the phrase, “over the hill.” The natural worrier in me wondered what happened on the other side of that hill.

I thought of this as I turned thirty myself, almost six years ago. Was I now over the hill too?

I suppose I’m still grappling with the phrase today. Are we ever really over the hill? Isn’t each day filled with peaks and valleys? Ups and downs at every turn?

Tomorrow, my dad turns sixty and that has me wondering where he is on that old hill now.

My wish for him is that, by now, he’s at the top of a really lovely hill, ready to begin coasting, taking in the view and everything beautiful along the way. He deserves that.

Happy birthday to the greatest guy I know. So great, in fact, everyone wants to be him…Here are some of his grand kids doing their best Poppy impersonations:

11 thoughts on “Over the hill.

  1. First off, HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Love this line! It’s the backbone of the slice! “I suppose I’m still grappling with the phrase today. Are we ever really over the hill? Isn’t each day filled with peaks and valleys? Ups and downs at every turn?” Thanks for sharing!

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  2. I’m right behind him by about a month and I appreciate your lovely sentiment and insight.
    I feel like one of the few times I ever skied standing at the top of that slope – a mix of nervousness and excitement and calm resignation since there’s only one way to go and how lucky to have the ride ahead!
    Happy Birthday yo your wonderful sounding Dad!

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  3. I guess after 40, it’s downhill from then! I believe this idiom came about to symbolize your life as a hill and at age 40, you are officially over the top of the hill. But nowadays 50 is the new 40!! 😜

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  4. I am so done with “over the hill” and birthdays decorated in black. The hill moves farther and farther away with each decade; there is still so much to see and do. Happy birthday to your pop!

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  5. Those pictures are priceless, as is the sentiment you express in this piece. It’s actually my birthday today, too, (52!) and I’ve been pondering what to write. Aging is such an interesting process. You now have me considering where I am on the hill! Perhaps that will inspire a post later today…

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  6. I know as I approach sixty, I am grappling with not what it means to me, but what it means to the others who interact with me. My school colleagues see me, but new administrators and others I wonder about. If people think 30 is over the hill, what is 60? Ps the post and pictures are so full of love.

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  7. Happy Birthday to your dad! I like the idea of a series of peaks and valleys (vs one big hill to get up and over). I just read a great article in the Times about how happy women in their 70s are. I checked in with a few 70 year old friends and they said it was true, so I’m looking forward to many more peaks (and I know I’ll have to pass through some valleys too).

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  8. Fun post! My favorite pic is the first one with the arm thrown up around the head. I bet he’s seen Poppy sit that way often. I really think sixty is the new 40 (coming from someone in her 60s).

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