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The In-Between Years

Spices in various spoons

My favorite movie always has and will be Fried Green Tomatoes (queue a future Food For Thought night?).  I admit that at 11 years old, I didn’t grasp what Evelyn Couch meant when she frantically claimed, “I’m too old to be young and too young to be old!” But I think I’m starting to get it. While I may not love that admission, I can’t imagine I’m the only one experiencing what I’ll call “the in-between years,” thus this blog post.

In a recent chat about professional development, someone I very much admire said, “there is something to be said for being seasoned,” and I have yet to kick that thought. I’ve been plagued with wondering, ‘How do you know when you’re…seasoned?”

For my ‘age and stage’ I am proud and confident of where I am in my career, but that pride is coupled with knowing there is still a lot ahead of me. While there are minutes, meetings, and major moments where I’m the go-to person, I remember that I (and honestly, all of us) could still use a little salt and pepper, maybe a dash of cayenne, or some garlic powder while we’re at it.

While I don’t feel green, I’m feeling ‘the in-between years.’

Sticking with the theme, the best flavors are developed with time, so why would this be any different? When I make a Sunday sauce, I am patient with my ingredients. I don’t expect to toss everything in a pot and BAM! There’s a lick-the-bottom-of-the-bowl good meal. But when I’m thoughtful, intentional, and allow everything to develop, I get something that is robust and balanced. This is a mentality I’ve found valuable in my career. I no longer measure success by asking “did I get there?”, and I’m starting to enjoy the simmer. Here, I remind myself to let things develop and that if I can remain patient, I can end up with something really great.

It’s an exciting place to be, somewhere between knowing your stuff and knowing there is still so much ahead of you. Who knows, maybe next year I’ll have collected more recipes or tried some new spices. Maybe I won’t feel “too old to be young and too young to be old,” maybe I’ll just feel seasoned.

Written by Allie Glick

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