A few months ago I turned 40. Not one to make a big song and dance about it, I went to Paris thinking that perhaps a week in my favourite city would distract me from the fact I had now turned…40. It did not. I still slipped into that dark place of age-related remorse as poor hub tried his best to console: “Sweetie, sweetie…I know it’s early but…some Champagne?”
It seemed to happen so suddenly. One minute I’m a spritely 28 year old swinging her switch around on a dance-floor with so much potential, then 30 and then four-oh-I-maybe-I-haven’t-fulfilled-my-potential. Needless to mention, the last 10 years have certainly whooshed past.
Now, I too had been slightly conditioned that it could indeed be okay, this turning 40 business. That conclusion had been reached because of repeatedly hearing the catch-cry: “40 is the new 30”. It is not. Well, sorry, allow me to clarify: if this “new 30” means having parts of your body now looking southward, developing pigmentation (thanks Australia) and other age related facial degeneration, creaking joints, back issues, greying and thinning hair and observing the younger folk with pursed lips while thinking: “Skirts get shorter and shorter every year. Next, they’ll be wearing nothing at all” then sure – this is a “new 30”. It is, in fact, so “new” I’m going to call it: 40. Yep. There, it is. Unless your JLo with her enviable genetics, toy-boy and teams of people keeping her the alleged “new 30”, you are indeed just 40. Sorry to burst anyone’s bubble.
But has it all been bad? All a giant blur of “I-wish-I-had-of?” What type of ingrate am I if I can’t count my blessings, appreciate my health, comparative prosperity and the abundance of love in my life (stop it, I’m getting all choked up here).
So, excuse me as I get on my soapbox; here’s what I’ve learnt along the way:
If you must go out with a loser, do it only once
It can happen. Somehow, you have been seduced by the world’s biggest dick-head, and he soon has you believing that you can’t do any better. A total succubus of your self-esteem & energy. Don’t waste another minute with a useless man who doesn’t respect and adore you. And importantly, if you have done time with a bad egg, learn from it and do it just the once. Better an empty apartment than a bad tenant.
Being comfortable in your skin rocks
Youth is SO wasted on the young. I spent my entire 20’s being racked with self-loathing and never feeling quite good enough. What a bloody waste of time! And Youth! So, it’s empowering to now feel slinky-like comfortable in my skin knowing that I can hold my own, that I can contribute to most conversations and connect easily with people, without the pesky second guessing of myself. Yea, I’m not perfect; I’ll probably now never be a swimsuit model (when one door shuts) or win Dancing with the Stars, but hey, I like me. I’d hang out with me.
Friendships and family are more important than work
Don’t live with regret. Regret is weighty. Spend quality time with the people you love as you don’t know what’s around the corner.
See the Bigger Picture
It’s so easy to get caught up in trivialities. “Who said what to whom,” “what will everyone think if…” The most important thing is: what do you think of yourself? Have you a good conscience? People spend most of every waking hour thinking about themselves. So, don’t get bogged down with worrying about what people think of you because they’re not.
Follow your gut
You know the feeling you have, the one telling you to “ring your grandmother,” “stay clear of that toxic person” or “follow that career path.” This is your instinct. Life is risk; you’re not always going to make the right decision. But time and time again, I have learnt the hard way by not following my instinct and have made the wrong call. So, I’m learning to be more instinctual like a jaguar, to follow that gut-feeling and pounce at the right opportunity.
So, my Glammie friends, a few tid-bits of experience to leave you with this year. Thank you, to all of my readers and for your support of Glam Me Up. We can now all tick 2012 off the ‘To Do’ list. Bring on 2013!
Travel safe tonight.