I am sitting here staring at the clock and counting down the hours; 2 hours left of my 30’s. I am turning 40! I must admit that this has been the hardest birthday to swallow thus far. Partly because saying that I am 40 is so sobering. I feel like there are new expectations or a new way I should be thinking or acting. To think that 20 years ago I was 20 years old. I literally feel like being 21 was just yesterday. I remember it so vividly. So much has happened in the past 20 years. When I think of who I was and what I was doing and fast forward to now, it’s amazing to see the changes and what I have accomplished.
I am proud of who I have become and the roles I play as mom, wife, friend, and co-worker. I am content where I am at in life. The only frustrating part for me is my high expectations for myself, which are nothing new. The past year has been filled with watching others have amazing 40th birthdays and looking at what they have invested in themselves in terms of health and fitness. I had this idea in my head of what I would look like on my 40th birthday, slim and trim with great hair and glowing skin. I would look like the epitome of health. Instead, the reality is that I am still 15 pounds overweight, with skin problems, horrible digestion, and a weak pelvic floor and core. Definitely, not where I wanted to be and not where I imagined myself to be, but hey this is my current reality. I accept it.
On the brighter side, I feel that 40 brings more mental stability and clarity. Gone are the days of trying to be someone you are not, or keeping up with those around you. No more trying to do things by a certain age.. “I have to be married by 30”.. “I have to have kids by 35”.. “I have to be in a certain type of job by 35”. All of these are out of the window. Instead of trying to be, and trying to do, I am going to just be. A little voice has been whispering in my ear for the last few weeks saying “slow down”, “rest”, “you are enough”. I have been hearing this voice and I am now going to listen to this voice.
On January 1st this year I set an intention, in my 40th year of life, I am going to stop worrying about trying to meet everyone’s expectations of me (including my own) and I am going to focus on me. What do I want out of life? What makes me happy? What do I need to do for myself? How can I slow down and take care of myself? At the beginning of the year, I found a great quote online and put it as the wallpaper on my phone. Every time I unlock my phone, I see the quote: “And so she decided to start living the life she’d imagined”. I love this quote. It resonates with me on a deeper level. I remember as a child dreaming of what my life would look like as an adult; the places I would go, the adventures I would have. I used to have a vivid imagination as a child. Somewhere along the way, my imagination got lost and was replaced by reality and unmet expectations.
I have decided that I am going to return to my child-like state and focus on the flow of imagination and creativity. Return to my roots as an Aquarius. While working on my health and well-being, I am going to travel, write, exercise, meditate, read, reflect, relax and just be. When I let go of expectations and the “should’ve”, “could’ve”, “would’ve” falls away, there are endless possibilities. 40 is going to be great, I just know it.