University of Life

Forty-Four Times Around The Sun

Finding my forties are the best

Another birthday during the covid-19 pandemic. January 2022. I just turned 44. Usually, I am excited about my birthday. I was excited about my birthday. I made some plans to see some friends. Ontario Canada is in another lockdown and outdoor patios are permitted to be open. Yes, in January, in Canada, a couple of my friends and I met up at a cold, snowy, outdoor patio. I wore my snow pants, there was a heater and my beer stayed cold. It was nice to see them, and it was fun to take in the ridiculousness of sitting outdoors, having beers, and being served by the pub staff.

I was not prepared for the feeling of uneasiness that came following my birthdate. I tried to talk with my husband about it, but I could not express it properly. I felt that turning 44 was too close to 45, which is too close to 50. Now I know that I am getting ahead of myself by thinking of turning 50 and that many of my friends are in their 50’s and they are really killing it. This is about me, turning 45. It may also be about my kids growing up, moving away to school, and one turning 20 this year for goodness sake. I am not feeling old enough to have a 20-year-old. I remember when I turned 40 and my Dad expressed that he was not feeling old enough to have a 40-year-old. Same Dad, same.

In August 2021 I gave up finishing the list of books I had in the queue that had been ordered from the self-help/self-love section. I ordered a few fiction novels and to date, I have read more books in six months than I had in the past 3 years. One day I just closed one of those books and thought to myself, I am done. I believe that my heart, my mind, and my soul is just fine. That I needed a break from books that may actually begun to do me more harm than good. Books that made me feel that there was constantly something that I needed to fix and change about myself, when I truly believe that I am a kind, loving and good person. I am not perfect, and I make mistakes. I do however own those mistakes, learn from them, and take corrective action when appropriate. I feel that I have blossomed in my 40’s. I have brought some people closer to my heart by making new or stronger connections with those with who I enjoy spending time. I no longer waste time on things that upset me, I have unfollowed social media feeds that I have deemed unhealthy for me, and I have started to prioritize salads over French fries!

Turning 44 is still new to me. I did recolour my hair after not colouring it for two and a half years. I had a couple of hard days feeling that I looked worn out and old. I decided for me, that changing my hair was an easy change to make to bring myself some joy. I even added new fuchsia extensions to my hair to assist in feeling like the young 44-year-old I want to feel like. In October of 2021, over 25 years of waiting I decided to pierce my nose. I said to my husband that this is something that I have always wanted but didn’t do because of other people’s voices in my head. I assured him that if I didn’t like it, it would fill in and heal up. I do love it and have no plans to take it out and let my new little nose piercing hole grow in. Right now, in current time, I feel more like myself than I may ever have.

Selfie, Jan. 2022

I feel confident. I feel smart. I feel like I have my shit together. Maybe not all my shit, but the big stuff is all going in the right direction. My kids are good humans. My relationship with my husband is strong and healthy, even after all the lockdowns, work from home, still working from home and hard times that we have faced together since turning 40. I have lots more to be grateful for than I can list. I have every intention of not letting this yucky feeling of getting older be something that I feel daily. I plan to let it have a week or two and then, replace it with plans of how to make the next chapter of my life a great one. I know there is so much left in my life to live and I plan on not wasting any of it.

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