I woke up this morning with a pit in my stomach. ” Tomorrow when I wake up I’ll be officially 40, over the hill, middle aged.” I was born at 6:30 am and I hope to be sleeping still at that time. I’m not sure why, but this birthday is hitting me hard? So what are you supposed to do on the last day of your 30’s? Part of me wanted to sit in bed and watch re-runs of ‘The Real World’ and ‘90210’ and re-live my youth. I don’t FEEL 40. So I got myself out and bed and opted to go buy an outfit to wear when I celebrate my 40th birthday. Thats a good way to spend it right? Shopping is always good therapy for me. I’ve never had as hard of a time with a milestone birthday as I am with this one and I think its for many reasons. I remember growing up our parents and their friends would throw “over the hill” parties when they turned 40.These would be complete with gag gifts like walkers, diapers, dentures, toupees and black balloons everywhere signaling the end was near. And when your a kid, you believed it. 40 was ancient. I feel like I’ll have control over my bowels for at LEAST another 30 years or so, I think I’ll be able to walk for awhile still unless of course I have another crappy ski accident and I don’t plan on losing my teeth soon so why all the fuss back then? I guess it feels like its the end of my youth. No more fun, no more acting like a stupid kid, no more babies, no more drinking too many cocktails, no more concerts, no more blasting Eminem in my car. Automatic Minivan, mom jeans and a manageable haircut. But I know deep down thats not the way it is anymore. I know that 40 is the new 30. ‘Sex in The City’ taught us that. I know that people don’t throw “over the hill” parties now at 40, I know that I can still go out and have a few too many cocktails, I know that I can blast Eminem in my Flex until I’m 80 if I want, I know women have babies way into their 40’s (God bless them), and I know I’ve got quite a few concerts ahead of me this year planned already. You’re only as old as you feel. Some days I feel 40 and some days I feel 21. But I know I’ve got a whole ‘lotta living to do still. So if you see me cruising down the freeway with the windows down blaring my rap music and bopping my head, don’t judge. Appreciate the fact that you are only as young as you feel and no one can take that feeling away from you.
As I approach my 40th birthday, this made me start to think. If I could go back in time and start my life over again would I? And at what age would I go back to? What would I do differently? As we get older we learn about things through life lessons. I’d like to think now that I could go back to high school and be a different person, but the person I was in high school is not the same person that I am now. I’ve changed through life lessons and journeys. I’d love to go back to high school with the confidence I have now an blow off everything that bothered me back then. I wish I could tell my younger self that the high school years don’t matter, and your real friends will always be there for you (and they still are). And it doesn’t matter what party you go to. And it doesn’t matter what Susie Smith said about you. But those are things that we learn with time. I wish that I could express that to my children, and they could go through their school years knowing this, but I know it’s something they will have to also learn on their own. I look at the opportunities that I had that I blew off and I want to Yell at my younger self. But I strongly believe that everything that you go through brings you to where you’re supposed to be. Every mistake, every wrong turn, every breath you take is part of your destiny. If you turn left instead of right your entire course of life might change. Life is so precious and if I could do one thing, it would be to realize that and remember that on a daily basis. If I could go back, I would go back to 23 years old. This is the year that I met my husband and my life began. We married and had children. I would cherish each and every moment with my children, enjoy every moment of every pregnancy, spend more quality time with my kids, be more patient with them, and try to remember that each day is a gift. You never know what tomorrow will bring. But what I can do is try to remember that from now on. Remember that my children are only going to be a little for so long. I’ve watched them grow at lightning speed. So for the year 2015, I’m going to try and appreciate each day. Be more patient, be more understanding. And take in every little moment that I have with my children and husband. Because before I know it they will be off to college and have families of their own. And these times of their youth will be just a fleeting memory.