Late Bloomers

I'm a late bloomer!

It's not just my youthful appearance, though that is noticeable too. * If you go through my Timeline you'd understand I am a fossil, that and according to the Gen Z's living in my house, mainly, my son .

I am a late bloomer when it comes to realizing my full potential. After a tumultuous adolescence where I floundered for decades, I am only now realizing my potential and experiencing my moment of adulthood.

Late bloomers are easy to spot. They're the ones who look like they have way too much energy and enthusiasm for their age.

Perhaps I am a little biased with this statement and it's just anecdotal, but hear me out. I have a controversial theory that late bloomers, who used to be thought of as losers and misfits, types who were too slack-jawed or slow-witted to figure out life earlier, may be better at maintaining a youthful spirit (and dare I say, looks too).

People who do not want to follow a path that leads to a predictable end are, more often than not, able to use the experience and skills they have gained to achieve, albeit later, outstanding creative, innovative results that benefit themselves and others.

Deferred gratification is something we often attribute to successful business people. But if we are able to delay gratification when we make decisions in our personal lives, can we reap similar benefits? Will we have more success? Or will we at least have more fun?

I'll answer that later.

Was I actually aware that I was a late bloomer? Yes and No. Yes, because I felt I was always ahead or behind my time. I wanted to be born in the past or in the future and drifted aimlessly through the present without realizing it. No, because when I was younger I would have been embarrassed to admit it. When I was 16, I was in a hurry to learn to drive, travel the world, and get married. In my early 20s, I wanted kids, a house and a stellar career. Peer pressure, family pressure, society telling me to hurry up and do everything at the drop of a hat. But I had no idea what I was doing. I did all these things and failed because I was out of sync with my time and my understanding of the world and especially of the inner world, of myself, of what I wanted and what I did not want, and because of that, I delegated these decisions to others.

Hence, my many failures, arising from not understanding until recentely that whatever decision I made, or make, right or wrong, including the decision to let others decide for me, is still under the locus of my control. Another "revelation" was that I was not the only one going through these existential doubts.

Late bloomers are a real phenomenon. Anyone who has ever been told that he or she would not make it because of poor grades in school can tell you that it's entirely possible for someone to mature later than average and be very successful in the long run.

A late bloomer is someone who gets going later in life than the average person. There are many examples of late bloomer success stories: Laura Ingalls Wilder, who was 65 years old when “Little House in the Big Woods” was published. She wrote other “Little House” series including the last one that came out at age 76; Anna Mary Robertson or, Grandma Moses, who is famous for her naive art, fame she achieved when she was in her late 70's; Charles Darwin was 50 when he published The Origin of Species; and Pablo Picasso did not paint his most critically acclaimed painting until he was 53, and so, so many others.

Of course, I do not have the audacity to compare myself to these incredibly talented and amazing people. I am me, and I have my own path, which for once, I start to see clearing up ahead of me.

I cite these examples to remind myself, as well as others who may find themselves in the situation of a "late bloomer," not to despair. Yes, the odds are against us. Society sees us as perpetual quitters rather than people capable of adapting, moving on after failure, learning from our mistakes and continuing to pursue the dr