It's when everything happens at once that it gets harder.
In my younger years, just after I was of age to legally enter a bar, my cousin and I went out one night. We both had our first daughters at home but we took an evening every so often to get away for a little while. On this particular night, we weren't carded. In the car later, going home, we pondered this. Did we look old? No, that wasn't it. But we did act differently from others our age who had yet to get married or have children. Through the discussion we came to a conclusion.
It wasn't our appearance that labeled us older. It was that the younger ones still believed they controlled their lives. Us, at that point, we had learned that we didn't control a thing other than our reactions to the runaway train life really was. It was all about our attitude. And by 21, we had both been disillusioned to the fantasy that we controlled anything other than ourselves.
I've never lost that lesson. But I had come to believe in a certain safety - that things had a way of not coming faster than someone could handle. Recently, I've been disillusioned to that belief as well.
At certain times in life, things will lash at you. They will lash and lash until you are a mental bloody heap on the ground of life, begging for mercy, for it all to stop and let you catch your breath. And just when you think you can catch your breath, you'll get sucker punched again.
The key is to keep going, to pick yourself up and trudge on....
As the saying goes - What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Stray strong out there.