A Birthday Confession

The Next Family

By Brandy Black

I’m hitting a pretty big milestone this year.  I remember my mom’s “Over the Hill” party and it was major.  Now here I go blazing into 40.  Honestly I think it hit me more when my wife turned 40; I was depressed for the both of us.  I felt like life was over, our aches and pains would begin and our “hottie” years would end.  I actually put Susan into a depression. I couldn’t shut up about grey hairs, wrinkles, aging hands, and sunspots. But now that it’s almost here for me I’m ready.  It has got me thinking though.  What have I done with my first 40 years? Am I the person I wanted to be?  What haven’t I done?  What will I do?  All these questions have made me realize that my next 40 years should in theory be better than the first.  I know that all you twenty something’s are probably laughing at me right now because I’m just “old” and coming up with excuses for why aging is a “good thing”, but hear me out on this one.

My first two decades were spent simply growing up and setting the foundation for who I am now.  My twenties were spent playing, drinking, and generally celebrating freedom.  My thirties have been about embracing the “grown-up” part of my life, settling in a career, marriage, and having kids.  Now here I am with a strong hold on things, no more forced learning but a genuine want to be well versed, kids that allow me to act forever young.  Less fear.  More money. My wife by my side. This is my time!

Why is it that 40 is so monumental? What are we afraid of besides the obvious?  It seems that there is a general feeling of being stuck.  This is life and now I go downhill.  But I, the embracer of change, am starting to think, I can do whatever I want, become whomever, re-invent myself, take up baking or surfing or sailing.  I have the confidence that I never had before. I am breaking down the walls that I was beginning to put around me.  I am not going to allow myself to feel stuck.  I will say yes rather than no. I will deny the stigma that goes along with “aging” and make my forties my best years yet.

Just please don’t tell anyone I’m 40.  I mean do they really need to know?

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