And then he turned 46…

46 is the double of 23.

23 is a prime number. And one is at one’s prime at 23. Not intellectually or by way of accomplishment, but just physically. You can safely say that if handled well, 46 turns out to be one of many milestones on the way to your intellectual peak…but can also prove to be the middle of a mid-life crisis.

Looking at the landscape – heroes (or protagonists, as they are now called) like SRK are pushing 60 and still making it look as if they are not a day over 40…the likes of Milind Soman are looking better than they were at 30, and the hoi polloi are bust hauling their potbellies over to the next treadmill.

Here is the scene at 45.

45 is an odd number.

Yes, odd from the number system perspective. But also odd from the perspective of life.

It’s not a crossroads number (that’s mostly 40, for some reason). It’s not a halfway marker (wishes horses but stats say otherwise). It’s kind of halfway through a decade that ends in 50 (which seems a big deal). 

And so, when you turn 45, you know at the back of your head that it’s a milestone (we are tuned to milestones in multiples of 5, again, no explanation), but we can’t seem to recall what this milestone is! 

You want it to seem important – it’s not the same as 44 or 46 for sure – but again, giving importance without reason isn’t really going anywhere. 

So let’s come up with a reason to make this important. 40 is an age when somehow realisation dawns – I’m getting older. 45 is when you have accepted it, but have maybe started to ignore the fact – coz I’m not yet 50 you know. 

And this ignorance leads to many things – pot bellies, glaring colored clothes, half pants with chicken legs, and continuation of a lifestyle that your body and mind accepted when 20 but now creaks under the abuse of it all. 

So let’s make 45 the marker when you start to do something. When you start to get rid of the things that you think are youthful, but only end up making you look ridiculous. When you start taking care of the body and mind that supported you so well but  you willingly or unwillingly tortured through your excessive lifestyle. When you, as our ancients told us, start preparing for vanaprasthashrama – the age of letting go of stuff and starting to accept that materiality only makes us cling, not enjoy. 

Let’s not let go of our youthful spirit, just some external markers that the world misinterprets. Let’s not let go of our passion for life, just re-tune to adjust our internal perspectives. And let’s not wait for age to catch up – instead, meet it head on, and successfully, like we took up our educational and career challenges in the past, and won.

It’s time to let go. And hold on only to things that matter. 

Do join me in wishing Rohit a very happy 45. or 46. What does it matter – it’s all the same until one touches 50:)