I’m about to turn forty. Forty!
Oh. My. God. FORTY! How?
How did this happen? Where did the last ten, or even twenty years go?
I think I’m about to have some sort of melt down or something. And no one gets it. No one! Everyone looks at me as if I am nuts because this bothers me. All I get back when I try to talk about it is, “Why does this bother you?” Or, “Age is just a number. You’re as old as you feel.” Oh, and I love this one, “Forty is the new thirty.” I say bullshit to that. Like hell it’s the new thirty.
Thirty is still thirty and forty is… well forty is just fucking entirely different. Forty means wrinkles (because yes, I am that vain) where there wasn’t before. Forty is looking around at the dance club crowd and realizing I’m old enough to be everyone’s mother.
Forty is other people. Forty is not me!
I don’t look forty and I don’t feel forty. I feel like something else entirely and that’s the fuck of it all. How in the hell can I be forty? Wasn’t I just twenty-eight? Didn’t I just turn thirty? I swear to you that was just five minutes ago. Wasn’t it?
So, here’s the deal. I’ll list all my reasons for why turning forty bothers me, and you can all comment and tell me how silly I am. How I shouldn’t worry. How I will love my forties. -By the way, the people that say these things to me are either in their early thirties or far past when they themselves turned forty.
And men? Yeah, guys sorry, but your opinion on this doesn’t count for much with me because it is not the same for you. It’s just not. Most men tend to look better with age.
So please, comment and I’ll roll my eyes, ball my fists and maybe even throw a tantrum. And when it’s all said and done, I'll turn forty and will survive, because that’s what I do.
1) I fear my mortality the older I get.
2) I do not want to look old.
3) I do not want to get old.
4) I feel like I must have missed something somewhere because the last ten to twenty years is a blur. What was I doing? Oh, yeah. Having kids.
5) I don’t think I am qualified to be forty. Wasn’t I supposed to know more than I do now?
6) I have a twenty-three year old stepson and a twenty-one year old son. You know what this means? Yes, yes. Someday, in the not too distant future, I will be a grandmother.
7) I am not ready to be a grandmother. How in the hell could I be a grandmother? This freaks me the fuck out.
8) I also have an eight and nine year old. If I am supposed to be forty then why the hell are there little children still living under my roof? (Yes, I realize this is completely insane because I chose to birth them. Humor me.)
9) I can’t see past the wrinkles that are already here and will continue to show up, as well as the physical aches and pains I already have. And let’s not even get into my medical issues. This will all only get worse.
10) I’m just not ready.
These are all basic normal fears. Yet no one, other than one person on twitter so far, seems to understand them. Everyone just poo-poo’s me and dismisses it. That really pisses me off.
Do I know that I'm being irrational? Yes. I am well aware. Do I know that these are just fears and that I will get past it and it will eventually be no big deal? Yes. I know this too.
But, it doesn’t change how I feel right now.
Right now I am completely frustrated, vacillating between ignoring my fears and having a panic attack over them. Also, having no one understand this doesn’t feel very good either.
In less than one week, it’s my birthday. I'll officially be forty. I may or may not be tweeting. I may be curled up in bed in tears or I may be totally fine. Who the hell knows. Certainly not me. I guess we’ll just wait and see.