In 45 days, I’ll be 40. There I said it. It’s true now.
I’ve spent most of this year thinking about what that means: to me, to society, to my career. It’s weird going through it alone. I have a couple of friends my own age, but not many and they are far away. We don’t really talk. We post and we comment. I watch my peers’ birthdays come and go on Facebook and see pictures of them in front of their cakes with all the fucking candles. Dear lord, after a certain age does this get to be a fire hazard?
Following my contemporaries’ achievements and milestones from the other side of social media I wonder where all the time has gone. I chastise myself for being emotionally stunted. I wonder if I should have had kids or something. I don’t look 40, right?
Most of my immediate circle is made up of people who are older than me. They’ve all left 40 behind and think it’s helpful to downplay it to me. Like “oh, it’s no big deal’, or “ha! call me when you’re 50”.
I know I’m not the first bitch to turn 40, but damn!
It’s not easy for someone whose identity has been all tied up with being “the youngest” to accept that they are no longer young. Not old but not young, rather trapped somewhere between. Nobody likes a confused 40-year-old.
I feel like I’ve slept through the last 15 years. Like I Rip Van Winkled myself to this point in time. I’ve been reviewing, reminiscing and letting nostalgia run wild, listening to ’90s and ’70s music on Pandora and trying to remember how I got here.
So, I gave myself an assignment: starting this Sunday (August 14th) I will post 40 posts in 40 days as a countdown to my 40th on September 22nd (feel free to send gifts). There’ll be stories from the past and possibly musings on the future, anecdotes and poetry alike. I’m writing 95% of it now, but if I find a gem from the past, I’ll throw that in too.
I hope you’ll follow along with me as I try to figure it out. I have all of these memories of all of these experiences and all of these thoughts on what they mean or where they’ve led.
They do lead somewhere, right?