Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Dear 40

Dear 40:

It was a pleasure to meet on my birthday two weeks ago. That is surprisingly true given how nervous I was about our meeting. I'm not sure I was completely prepared, but I got up that morning, applied my best anti-aging moisturizer and went out into the world. After all, as my mother used to say, getting older is better than the alternative.

As apprehensive as I've been, I've also been looking forward to our time together. You are the years when my kids will grow and start to find their way. This is when my husband and I can begin spending more time together. In fact, I expect you will be some of my best years. That said, I think it's important we start our relationship with a clear understanding of each other:
  1. I am familiar with photoshop. You can throw as many bikini-clad Kardashians at me in the checkout line as you'd like, but it will not make me envious or self-conscious. I may have stretch marks, but I also have self-respect and class which is something no amount photo manipulation can give those ladies. 
  2. I am well aware that I am not the forty-year-old woman I thought I would become when I was eighteen. I'll never do a space walk. I'll never marry John Taylor of Duran Duran. Reminding me of these facts is pointless. It will not cause disappointment or frustration. I was only eighteen. I was not capable of imagining how much more adventurous being a mom could be. I hadn't yet discovered that the best quality in a man is not how much gel his hair can hold, but how much he loves his family.
  3. I am good at math. I understand that I do not have the time ahead of me that I once did. However, I will continue to set goals and strive to achieve them. It is not too late to reach my desired destination. It is simply too early to arrive.
  4. I will be calling the shots these next ten years, not you. I will not miss out on opportunities because I am too old. I will look good, not good for my age. I will be young, not young at heart. Do not misunderstand. I will not deny our acquaintance. I simply deny your significance.
If you still lack clarity on the road ahead for us, refer to some of your previous companions who have shown me the way, women such as Trudie Styler, Christiane Amanpour and, above all, my Aunt Gloria. These ladies have shown me that success and happiness have nothing to do with birth year or botox, and everything to do with embracing family and opportunity. 

Thank you for your understanding in this matter. I wish you well. Please give my best to 50. 

Actually, strike that. I'll do it myself.


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