Friday, September 7, 2012
At the end of this month, I am turning forty. The big four oh. A milestone, if you will.
Birthdays in my family have always been a big deal. As they should be. It's a celebration of you and your entrance into this world.
I'm not bothered by turning forty. I am actually looking forward to it. Closing out my thirties and planning and anticipating what the next decade holds for me.
My thirties were an exceptionally busy decade. I met my husband when I was thirty. We moved in together when I was thirty one. We bought a house together when I was thirty three. We were married when I was thirty four. We had our first daughter when I was thirty five, along with my first miscarriage. We had our son when I was thirty six. I launched my business when I was thirty seven, as well as endured an entire home renovation. My second daughter was born when I was thirty eight. I had another miscarriage when I was thirty nine, and changed professions.
That brings us to forty. And a few things I have learned in that amount of living.
1. My body at 40 is in no way better than it was at 25. But here's the thing. I've accepted my body. If I could go back to my 25 year old self and tell her one thing, it would be to spend more time naked. She had a great body that she did not truly appreciate. At almost 40, I know now that this is the one and only vessel I have for this life. That means I need to eat right, exercise, and enjoy it.
2. Life is not a race. It doesn't matter what age you graduate university, or get your career on track, get married, or even have kids. It's a series of experiences. So slow down and relish them all, good and bad.
3. Worry is a waste of energy. Most of what I spent the last 40 years worrying about never came to fruition. I could have put that energy into becoming the first woman to walk on Uranus (not your anus, you dirties!). Enjoy more and worry less.
4. Money comes and goes. And will continue to do so. So stop fighting about it, yearning for it, and dreaming of it. Simply love what you have, give generously, and budget.
5. Having kids late was a wise choice for me. Having my first child at 35, I was told I was of 'advanced maternal age'. Whatever. I did a lot of living, partying, stumbling, and rising in those first 35 years. And I think this makes me a more prepared and balanced parent.
6. We are all in this together. So help out. Whether that be financially or your time, the earth is our home and we should respect it.
7. Regret is as wasteful as worry. I have spent previous years wishing I could have a redo of several moments in my life. But I can't. So move on.
8. Love and health are of utmost importance. Give your love freely (but not too slutty) and guard your health.
9. We really do have the capacity to change. Learning and growing are changing. I am not the same person I was 5 years, 10 years, even 25 years ago. Evolution is what it's all about.
10. 40 is not the new 20. It's simply 20 times 2. Which means I'm twice the person now as I was 20 years ago.