“How much is this birthday going to cost me?” The accountant husband I live with asked, with unveiled exasperation. I had already had one fabulous surprise party, albeit 2 weeks before the birthday, and thereby really starting a 10 day festival rather than simply the wonderful celebration that it was. I had the pedicure, the waxing of all straggly bits, the chocolate brown nails, and now I was planning a second party, for the actual night, of course, and I had just announced that I was “off to the mall to get a dress!”
Well I certainly couldn’t turn 40 in anything I owned.
Okay. I must admit I have made a big deal out of this turning 40 thing. You know those people that say “oh its no big deal” but it really is? Not me. How about those people who really don’t care? No. Not me again. Then there are the extremists who start having a crisis that leads from a too short mini skirt to a face life in a few swift months. That is not me. I have seen this as a process, mainly of acceptance of the fact that 40 is a milestone, like it or not, and that it is time to take stock. Within this process I have had moments of regret that time has passed so fast and that it will continue to race by. I have looked at myself, my choices and my life as it is and given it some long thought. I have felt vain and wondered if I was beyond the threshold of sexy and passed the point of being found hot. I have realized that once I look all around me, I am actually pretty happy with my lot. And what is not good, I have the power to change.
My job, this blog, my photography and moosefur have all fulfilled a part in me that was frankly a little lost. Why can’t we have this wisdom, this acceptance of who were are, this shift of maturity when we are young and beautiful? That is the eternal question. But then I realize that there are two kinds of beautiful. The young, hopeful, on the brink of everything kind of beautiful and the knowing, wry, been-there-done-that kind of beauty. I know which is more sexy.
So in taking an inventory of myself at 40 I have come to the very wise conclusion that I am not the best, but I am just fine.
And so I am not brushing off this day and pretending it is no big deal. It is. Okay maybe some people might think that 2 parties and a new camera lens and a day at the beach and umpteen blog posts about all this is over the top. And you may have a point. But I have never been one to miss the opportunity for a little introspection and a party or two, or three.
See, tonight I found out that a third party is in the works for a Saturday in Montreal in July. I will get to celebrate all over again with my sisterhood of friends and their wonderful husbands. And I will get a chance, all over again, to feel really lucky. And pretty in my new dress.