Well, not for another couple of hours officially. Birthdays always pass without much fanfare for me. I welcome them, but I’m not one to shout from the rooftops or constantly remind people that I’m a year older. Getting older is a part of life that inspires fear in a great number of people, but not me. I’m only 27 (as of 10-08). I love being young, and I enjoy all of the things that come with youth, but I also look forward to getting old: being a dad, grandfather, and mentor to younger people. I’m eager to experience the wisdom that comes with age.
I also welcome every year with open arms because I can clearly see growth in my life. Personally, spiritually, career-wise, and financially. A year ago, I was becoming weary of my situation. I was happy, but I was bored, and my growth was being stunted. I was a tad hesitant to move on from where I was due to comfort, maybe even complacency, but circumstances beyond my control (God, without a doubt) forced me out of my comfort zone. Looking back, I can say that this was the best thing that could have happened. I can’t imagine myself still in the same surroundings/state of mind/situation.
I can say with full conviction that I have grown by leaps and bounds since that time. I’ve advance immensely character-wise, mentally, creatively, and as a business man. Much of that is due to my colleagues, The Wondaland Arts Society. I have always been a loner of sorts, and have always felt that I could do everything by myself. But this year I “joined forces” so to speak with a very dynamic group of individuals and helped create this label, this movement, this family. I’ve learned to become a team player. I think this has been difficult for me in the past because I’ve never really felt like I was in the midst of true peers, not at school, not in any workplace, nor in most social settings, and sometimes not even within my own family. Until the W.A.S.
Man, the members of the W.A.S. have contributed to my growth in so many ways! From Wolfaster Stanklin (Delvin) I’ve learned to be more humble and dedicated. From Wolfmaster Z (N. Wonder) I have learned to be a better leader. From Lord Disassembler (Rico) I have learned to be more reliable and “just get it done.” I’m still working on that, but I’m light-years ahead of the 2006 model of myself. From Wolfmaster Lightning (Joseph!) I’m reminded to continue to actively seek knowledge, shoot, to even be studious well beyond my scholastic career and reaffirming that there is nothing wrong with having an active, child-like imagination as an adult, that it’s actually a gift, (not to mention essential to what we are doing.) Through the one and only Janelle Monáe, I’ve strengthened my patience, integrity, and conviction. She could easily be a household name already if she dressed and wore her hair differently, or made more “pedestrian” music. But she chose to stay true to herself , and did so (is doing so) with extreme patience, ever the lady, never wavering from her artistic vision or her moral convictions. Because of this, in her career (and in life in general,) the rewards, both tangible and intangible, will be exponentially greater.
From the entire team I have learned real sacrifice (W.A.S., Each of you know what I’m talking about. We all sacrifice a lot for this vision.) But we all do so without any doubt that what we’re doing is what we’re supposed to be doing, that is what we’re meant to do. Make no mistake though, it’s all exciting and exhilarating, fun even. There’s nothing else that I’d rather be doing.
So I approach my 27th year with eagerness and anticipation. The idea of growing and learning as much this coming year as I have over the last 365 days is scary, (in a good way) and I’m super-excited about it. Funny thing is, I feel this way every year.
That’s why I look forward to each year, why I welcome growing older, i mean, better.
Mitchell A. Martian
P.S. I fear not losing my eyesight, my teeth, or my hair, only my imagination, my vision.
It (my imagination) has already outlasted those of most people my age.
It’s up to those of us who value our imaginations to continue to nurture them, or they will be lost to us forever.
At which point, no matter what age you are, you will become a boring old adult, a grown-up (y’all ol’ “grown and sexy” a$$!!! Y’all can have that $#!+!)