Age is just a number. Or so they say. Who and where are “they” anyway? I looked closely and found them to be at least a decade or two younger than my own 40-something year-old self. That’s when I decided that, in my book, “they” just don’t count.
One truth I came to believe and appreciate is that, at some stage, you will accept and feel content with your age. Once you reach that point, a whole new world will open in front of your eyes. You will wonder why you spent so much time fighting the unavoidable.
I stopped searching for “the real me” by now. My life, the one that I spent years building, was missing the key ingredient — me! I have been hiding behind “the search” and it’s time to reveal the person behind it — one with 40-something birthdays gone by and feet that have been walking this earth for these 40-something years.
Being 40-something has proven to have certain advantages. This is a good place in life to be. My priorities and outlook on life have changed — a lot! For one, the constant searching has been replaced with acceptance. Relationships have become more meaningful and sincere. Gone are the days of pushing boundaries. I have nothing to prove, I can now just be, be me, live life, love and be loved. I have learned the importance of trust and I know just how fragile life is.
The age of 40-something makes lots of no-no’s okay. I don’t feel guilty about having more than one best friend. Every single one of them adds value and meaning to my life and contributes immensely to my own character. A friend taught me how strong the attitude to “just be” truly is. Every day, year and age should be lived by this rule… Just be. It’s okay to prefer pilates to running. It’s okay to spend a little extra on skincare products. It’s also okay to have one late night and then crawl into bed early for the entire following week. Comfort takes priority to fashion, so flats in place of heels at a party — oh yes, it’s okay. I find myself actually reading those glossy (and expensive) magazines, and that is okay too.
So, as I come to accept my 40-something age, I plan to make my mark. I want to leave my legacy. What will my legacy be if I keep avoiding the years, my age and the changes it brings? I want the world to know who I am, what I stand for and just… Well, just be.
With age comes the experience that brings maturity and wisdom and suddenly it all makes sense. I have not been falling around, every step has been part of the journey to bring me where I am today, and today will bring me where I need to be tomorrow. Nothing has been meaningless, not even my mistakes. (There have been plenty!)
I salute you, my fellow woman, man — person. It is time to be the best you possibly can. No matter if it is at 30, 40 or 50, younger or older. Age is not just a number, it is YOUR number. Embrace it, love it and just be.