What decade has my mind, heart and soul? It’s complicated.

Last summer I stepped into my sixth decade.


Now just to clarify. That means I turned 50 — not 60. If you are 60, please don’t read anything into that clarification.

I’ve lived in the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and the 2000s.

Finish the Sentence Friday prompt:  My favorite decade was  . . .

Let’s do this analytically.

The Sixties.  Born in 1963.

Highlights:  Learned my ABCs. Learned to read with Dick and Jane in Mrs. Anabelle’s class at Audubon Elementary. Mom made me get up in middle of night to see Neil Armstrong make “one small step for man — one giant leap for Mankind.” Mom packed a lunch in a cooler and we stopped for picnics at rest areas on trips. Fast food drive thrus.


Lowlights:  Remember nightly body counts from Vietnam on Walter Cronkite. In first grade, Tracy B. throwing up on his coat beside me during nap time.  His vomit was yellow — as in daffodil yellow.  I was terrified that something was dreadfully wrong with him.


The Seventies:

Highlights: Friday nights, The Brady Bunch, Partridge Family. Kool & the Gang. The Jackson 5. Saturday morning cartoons. Sunday afternoons listening to Casey Kasem Top 40 Countdown on  AM station WAPE from Jacksonville lying on a towel, gritty sand underneath — on the beach at New Smyrna. David Cassidy (see Partridge Family.)  Disco. The Saturday Night Fever album. Mom wouldn’t let me see the movie. SNL. Chevy Chase, Steve Martin, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner.  The Eagles — Life in the Fast Lane. Hotel California.

Riding in Dad’s Estate Wagon to get ice cream at Dairy Bell on a summer night. Remember eating at McDonald’s for first time after Brownies meeting.


Lowlights:  Seventh grade. Dorothy Hamill haircut. Crushes on boys that didn’t know I was alive — or if they knew I existed, my brand was freakishly tall, quiet one.


The Eighties:

Highlights: Blondie. The Wall. Graduation from high school in 1981. SMU 1981 – 1985. Emory Law School. Met my Johnny. Got hitched in 1988. Perms. Dude Looks Like a Lady.  Emmitt Smith: the only highlight of the entire decade for UF football. Until December 31, 1989,  when the University of Florida announced that Steve Spurrier had accepted the offer to be the head football coach. Big hair, even bigger earrings.



Lowlights: Lawrence Taylor-esque shoulder pads. Blue eye shadow.


The Nineties:

Highlights: Our Jake was born in 1993. After that — the next five years are a blur.  Move from in-town Atlanta, Georgia to Madison on May 14, 1999. Forrest Gump. “Life is like a box of chocolates.”



Lowlights: Infertility. After our son was born, the 90s were all about trying to get pregnant again.


The New Millennium.

Highlights: Adoption of Hannie in 2001. Adoption of Joe in 2003. Midlife Crisis, triathlon phase. Writing my column. Discovering I could put words out in the universe and people read them. And responded.




Lowlights: ???. I was too busy I guess. Can’t think of anything.

2010s —

Highlights:  It’s complicated.

Lowlights:  It’s complicated.


Starting my sixth decade I’m trying to figure things out again. Never at a point in my life — well, since adolescence — have I felt so adrift. But hopeful  I will moor somewhere. Sometime. Sooner than later.

After paging through the annals of my mind, I have to say my favorite decade was . . . the SEVENTIES.

But honestly, I hope the best is yet to come. I just haven’t figured out how or what yet.

Stay tuned . . .

What about you? Your favorite decade?


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19 responses to “What decade has my mind, heart and soul? It’s complicated.”

  1. I totally hope this decade is the best to come and love how you chronicled the decades that you have indeed been present for wight he highs and lows for us today 🙂

    • Jamie Miles says:

      I agree. There is definitely an up and down wave to life. I guess the trick is to remain pretty constant whatever mountain or valley you find yourself.

  2. I remember See Dick run! Loved it. The yellow barf at naptime sounds horrifying though. HAHA to the Dorothy Hamill haircut! I remember those (did not have one myself but did have the poodle 80’s perm. And blue eyeshadow.
    And I hope that your best decade ever is to come, as well!

  3. clark says:

    (I will forgo statements characterizing the span of time covered in your Post…) but it’s amazing, isn’t it?
    We all speak of lifetimes, (“…these are the times of our lives”, “…it’s taking a life time for this cold to go away”, “…where there’s life there’s hope”), but to experience a span of time that is, in fact, a life time…tres cool Post, yo

  4. Dana says:

    We already discussed the hairstyle, but I loved get a quick synopsis of your life through the decades. Shoulder pads were definitely a low – who decided those were a good look for anyone? The best is yet to come – absolutely.

  5. Oh, I love your highlights and lowlights- what a great way to structure this prompt! It’s funny the childhood memories that jump out, isn’t it? When I was in first grade, my “lowlight” was Shane Barker throwing up at the end of the school day. I grabbed my lunchbox and ran for my life. I couldn’t stand him for years. Isn’t that horrible of me? 😉

    • Jamie Miles says:

      I thought that too. I really just grabbed at the first things that popped in my head. It is funny what spring to mind when you consider all the moments we’ve experienced in our lives.

  6. don says:

    I think my fat ass could use a triathlon phase, but that sounds hard.

    I hope your best decade is still in your future and that you find some solid ground to steady your adriftedness. Is that even a word? Well, I’m wishing you well either way.

  7. Considerer says:

    Blech to your 90’s. I think the 90’s were generally a bit shit all round. Wanna burn them with me?

    You are azackly 20 years better than me. I like that 😀 And you’ll find your mooring. It still *feels* like you have everything sorted and you know what you’re doing, even if you don’t feel it all the time.

    Great that you had a triathlon phase. I’m hoping to sign up for Brutal10 with workmates. That should be one helluva laugh – a little 10k through army training ground and (mostly) swamps and rivers.

    • Jamie Miles says:

      Hope you sign up for the race Lizzi. One good thing from my triathlon phase is that it introduced me to swimming and cycling for exercise. I do love to cycle now. Okay. I don’t hate it and some days I really like it. Hormones are a beast these days too. Oh well. Keep swimming I say. Hugs.

  8. I do like all your snippets of each decade. I agree that after I had my son, everything is a blur too!

  9. Man alive but you are thorough! Love this! Fun with Dick and Jane! See Spot
    Run,. You brought back so many memories for me. Thank you.

  10. […] of course that is not the point. The adrift soul in me would just like to laugh and giggle with the ladies in my crew. And why not throw my 13 year old […]

  11. ruchira says:

    Seriously, what fun it would be!

    I wonder what would be the discussion for a girls night out 😉

    Loved your thinking over it…hilarious yet creative 🙂

  12. tiffani says:

    I love this one and so remember reading that exact Dick and Jane book. Did every child learn to read with that book?

    I think this decade is your best. You look fit, know who you are and have a wonderful family! xoxo

  13. Miz Yank says:

    In grade school I also sat next to a boy named Tracy but I’m pleased to report that he never emitted any daffodil-yellow vomit in my vicinity. But I unfortunately empathize all too well with the Dorothy Hammill ‘do. Thanks for the fantastic nostalgia trip!



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