On Turning Forty

Today is my 40th(!) birthday, hence the title. And, strange though it may sound, I have been looking forward to this. I have had a great anticipation for this birthday, so much so that I cannot really explain it, even to myself, but it is true. It feels like I am waking up on Christmas morning, all that excitement bundled up at the base of my spine, just ready to race up it and set me spinning.

It has been a lovely weekend of celebration, friends, messages, and sweet gifts. My dear ones have been generous and kind, and I have greatly enjoyed myself. Honestly, it is a gift merely to be able to do that: enjoy myself. It has been several months of struggle on that front, and to be at a point where I can actually enjoy a night out with zero guilt is the greatest gift. I am so thankful to God for that. He’s led me to people who can help me with my struggles, and I praise Him for that faithfulness and care.

Forty feels sweet, feels powerful, feels true in a way that I do not have adequate vocabulary to describe or explain (imagine such a thing: me without words!). This weekend, for instance, I found myself utterly fascinated with one coiling curl of my hair that is completely threaded through with silver from root to ends. I love it! I love the shock of tinsel amidst my dark hair, a bright grey which actually has been mistaken for glitter before by strangers.

As I step into forty, I feel as though I want to hold it close. I am at a point in my life where I acknowledge my own deep humanity. I am not every woman; it’s not all in me. I need help, and I am seeking it. I need encouragement and affirmation, and I am praying and asking for it. I am needing time with people, and I am making an effort to create space for that. I want to spend my forties becoming more and more the woman I truly want and who God has designed for me to be. I want to be more and more myself and proudly so. I want to do what makes me feel healthy and strong and right. I want to be creative and honest and indulge in the beauty of others’ imagination and thoughts.

As I head into my forties, I am looking forward to being completely, utterly, unabashedly me.


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