This Is the Last Day of Our Acquaintance

My thirties are coming to a close, and it feels remarkably unremarkable.

I imagine I’ll wake up tomorrow, and nothing will have changed aside from the fact that I will have managed to have survived into another decade. Which is pretty swell, really. Certainly beats the alternative, as they say.

In anticipation of this birthday, I compiled a brief set of goals to meet ahead of time. Some more introspective than others, certainly, and while I accomplished several, including my renewed dedication to writing, others fell by the wayside, such as finding a decent lipstick shade.

And while I know that turning forty is a big freaking deal, I think what is stuck in my brain is how on earth I’m going to beat the awesomeness that was my thirties.

40-years

In my thirties, I became a mother. First, to my sweet baby girl who is creeping up on 10 herself, and then to three more tiny people, one boy and two more girls, who are happy and healthy and loved.

In my thirties,my husband and I bought our first home. Sure, it’s tiny, sure, it needs a metric tonne of work, but it is ours. And that is amazing. It’s terribly adult of us, don’t you think?

In my thirties, I realized a ridiculous amount about myself. I finally got comfortable in this mortal coil of mine. Through four pregnancies, I realized how much my body could withstand and was amazed by that. I stopped being paralyzed by self-consciousness. I learned how to recognize when the anxiety was talking and what tools were needed to get her to kindly eff off. I learned that whatever unkind word popped into my head didn’t necessarily need to pass my lips, no matter how justifiable my emotions may or may not be.

In my thirties, I learned my own opinions, separately from my family and friends  – while some remained the same, not all did.

I don’t suspect I’ll wake up tomorrow feeling any differently. And I would venture to guess that as far as decades go, my thirties were a lot busier than the forties are slated to be. But I have a sneaking suspicion that in ten years’ time, a new list, albeit shorter, will be composed.

Perhaps by fifty I’ll find that elusive red lipstick.

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#BEFOREFORTY

In thirty-five days, I’ll be moving into a new decade. I have obviously known about this event for quite some time, but I hadn’t really given it much thought lately. It’s been a bit busy, what with four kids and keeping them alive and relatively cared for. Additionally, the fall is a busy time full of family birthdays, our anniversary, and of course Halloween. And what with Indian Summer being in full swing, I mean, I am sweating for crying out loud, it hardly seems that close to my Christmas-seasoned birthday.

But there you have it. Staring down the barrel of forty, I am. FORTY. it’s kind of an ugly word, don’t you think? If only the word gods had left the “u” in there, at least. I could be all Britishy about it, but noooo, it’s just a crass little word now. Not dignified like “colour” or even “honour.”

Blah.

Half of the time, I completely forget I turned 39 already. For some reason, (baby?) I still keep telling people I’m 38. I liked 38. 38 was a good age. I liked it so much I inadvertently stayed there for two years.

All the same, turning forty is overwhelmingly better than the alternative. As I’m already a year older than my mother was at her passing, of this I am keenly aware. And there are a great number of fabulous forty year-olds these days. I’m still younger than a number of actresses still portraying sex objects as opposed to wise grandmotherly types.

In anticipation of this birthday, I’ve got a few items on my list to accomplish. Finishing up my book, for starters. But on a smaller scale, I still don’t have a lipstick shade. I’m nearly forty, for heaven’s sake, I should be able to pick a lip colour. (see how much more dignified that “ou” is?) This weekend, I intend to find one. And maybe some makeup to wear every day. After all, I am no longer 38. No reason I should be scaring small children with this bare face.lips