Friday, April 18, 2014

This Is 40

For the past few months I have been freaking out, and usually not so silently, about this day as it drew near.  Today I turn 40.  FORTY.  1, 2, 3, that will take way to long.  10, 20, 30, 40.  That seems better.  Okay four decades seems better than 40 years for some reason.  Let me start with saying that it's not really the number or the actual age that has me freaked out.  I'm not worried about being closer to death.  Although I suppose I technically am closer, but the truth is I could get hit by a bus next week.  I'm not that close to "old age" where I'm freaked out about that.  Turning this age does bother me a bit because of the fact that my looks and youth are slowly fading.  I know that is shallow, but I'm just being honest here.  I don't like the fact that I LOOK older.  I always looked so young.  But the bigger issue I'm having with turning 40 is what it represents to me.   Here let me break it down.

The first decade of life, well let's face it, who remembers most of it?  The first decade I was just surviving and learning how to be a person.  When I hit the second decade and my teens, it was all I could do to get through the day without some sort of angst in connection to a boy, my clothes or my hair.  By the end of that decade, I went to college and started to grow up a bit.  Then I hit the 20s or what I like to refer to as, the party decade.   I don't know about you, but I did party and had a blast doing it.  Of course, that does get old after a while.  The 20s are also the time I learned about who I was.  I realized that I could be a bit overbearing, judgmental, opinionated, and a tad forthcoming with those opinions especially after a couple of drinks.  I don't tend to sugar coat things.  However, I am also loyal, kind, fun and hardworking.  It took me until the end of my 20s and even the beginning of my 30s to accept the "bad" parts about me.  It has also made me aware of what I do and how that can affect other people, so  I try to work on not giving in to those worse qualities, even though it can be difficult.  I had a good job for a while in my 20s, which I enjoyed and I got married to my fantastic guy at 27.  However, I was looking forward to what became the third decade of my life, becoming a mom.

My 30s have (so far) been my favorite decade.  I found out I was pregnant with Sonya one month before my 30th birthday.  Maybe that is why I wasn't so afraid of turning 30.  I had a goal.  I was working on something.  I was becoming a mom.  And yes, I'm still a mom, that will never change,  but the girls are older and don't need me like they did in my 30s.  Being  mom was something I always wanted to do.  It was honestly the biggest goal in my life.  I know that is so not PC to say these days, but it was.  Sure I had other dreams and aspirations, but without kids, none of that would have mattered to me.  I loved being pregnant and loved having babies. I wasn't crazy about the infant stage but it goes so fast that looking back now I suppose it wasn't that bad.  As crazy as I was during my 30s, and having the little two within 15 months of each other making me crazier, I still loved it.  Sure there were some days they drove me to drink, literally, and I was ready to run out and find the first place that would hire me, but I am so glad that I was there for all of it.  I was there for the funny things they said as toddlers, or the amusing things they did like the hair cutting incidents.  I know they still do need me more than they don't, but that's all going to change in this next decade.  And here is the reason that turning 40 freaks me out.  I have no idea where to go from here.

I feel like 40 is to old to try and start something new.  I know there are plenty of you out there who say it isn't, but most of the world would disagree with you.  Especially the hiring world.  To be honest, I don't even know what I would want to do.  The fact is I like being home with the girls.  I want to see them after school.  As they go through their teen years in the next decade of my life, I feel in some ways that's when I need to be here the most.  Sure they may not need help to get themselves fed or ready for bed, but what about when they are faced with being pressured to drink or take pictures of their boobs for snapchat?  What about when a boy breaks their heart or they are frustrated with their best friend?  I feel like I need to be around to monitor those situations.  I'm not saying I'm going to stop everything bad from happening, but being around will certainly help them to know that I am more likely to see what is going on in their lives.  So it appears that I should be okay with all this, but for whatever reason I'm not.  I feel like I need something else.  Something that doesn't involve PTA or Girl Scouts or any of the other things I do for them.  I need something for me, I guess.  I just don't know what that something is, and turning  40 is shining a glaring spotlight on the fact that I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up.

I know all of you have fantastic advice on what I could do and how to do it.  Trust me, I've thought of things too.  I still have aspirations of becoming a personal trainer of some sort, or teach workout classes.  However, getting certified requires me to take classes which cost time and money.  Those are two things I seem to be short on for myself these days.  Perhaps that will change once Georgia is in school full time next year, I don't know.  It's kind of a wait and see situation.

There's also this writing thing I do which I love.  It would be great to find something where I could write and do it from home, but isn't that the dream for every stay at home mom these days?  The market is saturated and I don't know that I'm good enough to break through that mess.  I already tried that once being a 20 year old blond hair, blue eyed actress, among the other 20 year old blond hair blue eyed actresses in this town.  We all see how that worked out for me.  If I'm being honest, that is another thing I would love to do again- act.  I've thought about trying out for a play near where I live, but again that lack of time thing gets in the way.  

I know, I know, I have to make it a priority for me and maybe that's what my 40s will be about.  Trying to find something for me while still being there for my family.  Right now I can't even imagine how I'm going to do that or where to start, but at least if I have an idea of where I'm headed that's better than nothing.  How much did I really know about kids at the beginning of my 30s before having the girls?  Not nearly what I thought, but I knew I had a goal of having babies and staying at home to raise them.  I did that, and I think I've done it well for the most part, so I can do this.  I can find something for me while still taking care of my babies and my husband.  Hopefully, finding something for me will help me to take care them even better.  Okay 40s, here I come!  Let's do this!

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