The healing power of a clean floor (and a good man)
Just FYI


Ahem. There is a massive event coming up, and I just want to warn everyone here. Brace yourselves.Are you sitting down? You probably are, unless you're like me and you've propped your laptop on a high shelf to try to keep your toddler from getting her sticky little fingers on it and pokepokepoking all the keys in an attempt to make the pictures of the baby come up.

So if you ARE like me (I'm sorry), sit down. Go ahead. The rest of us will wait.

Are we all sitting down and have braced ourselves? Okay. *deep breath*

I am turning 40. Next month.

Specifically, I am turning 40 in 38 days.

I know! You're shaken, right? I ARE shaken, aren't you? Because I keep working this fact into as many conversations as I can, and people are distinctly NOT SHAKEN by it. Example:

Friend: Wow, can you believe all this snow and cold?

Me: I KNOW! It's like HELL, and plus I am turning 40 next month, so my life is already full of drama and woe!

Friend (or so I THOUGHT):*

*obvious, glaring subtext there - "ONLY 40? Because I would have guessed you were at least ONE HUNDRED YEARS OLD, what with the situation going on under your eyes and whatever it is your hair seems to be doing. Can I get you a wheelchair? Because I don't want you to break a hip."

This shocking fact (the turning 40 thing, not the fact that my nearest and dearest really don't care) was brought to my attention last year. And yes, I technically KNEW that I was going to be turning 40, but we all KNOW that social security is going to be completely sucked dry by the Boomers before we get there, and it's not like we go around with that fact forefront in our minds, right? Except shoot, now I'm thinking about it, and what ARE we going to do about that? DANG BOOMERS, man! I'm going to start storing dry goods under my bed and glaring at my parents.

Anyhow, last year I was at a bridal shower. We were playing one of those games that one plays at a bridal shower, the sort of entertainment that would totally make you poke your own eyes out if you weren't enjoying the company and cake. Cake goes a long way for me. Anyhow, the bride was answering questions about her groom, to see how well she knew him, and at one point she said something about how he was going to turn 40 that year. And I sat there, daintily holding my cup of tea, and I took a break from eyeing the cake to think the following thoughts: "FORTY? Oh, no, she must be mistaken. Because she said earlier that he was born in 1970! And I was born in 1971! And *I* am not turning 40 until....wait, okay, let me think. HE was born in 1970. And he will be 40 this year. And I was born in, wait...."

The remainder of my thoughts on the subject are unprintable here, because I am not that kind of girl. At least, not in the "outside the head" voice.

So for the last year I've been coming to terms with this fact in my usual thoughtful, productive way. I've mostly been weeping and complaining about it. Also I've spent a lot of time staring in the mirror and pinching viciously at the skin on my belly to see what plastic surgery could do for me. This is the sort of wisdom that comes with age, you know.

And yet, despite ALL of this careful work, my birthday is STILL GOING TO HAPPEN. And I just realized this morning that I probably won't lose 20 pounds, start a stunning career, or finally hit that growth spurt I've been waiting on before then. So what good is 40, if it doesn't arrive in a movie montage of success, attractiveness, and wealth in unimagined proportions?

Sheesh. It's almost like all the Disney movies have been lying to me, and the darkest night doesn't promise a glorious dawn, if only you listen to your heart and truly BELIEVE.

Come to think of it, I've never seen a 40-year-old woman in a Disney movie, so those rules may not apply.

Well, that's all really. I just wanted to warn you all, so you could start storing dry goods underneath your beds too. Or something. Look, I don't know. I can't be expected to figure EVERYTHING out, and right now I'm busy thinking about ME and MY IMPENDING 40-NESS.

And cake.


Headless Mom

Totally get your favorite cake. 40 isn't so bad when faced with your favorite cake.

laura gf

The fairy godmother in Cinderella was certainly older than 40 -- what if you devoted the next month to being your own fairy godmother? I don't mean in the "magically lose 20 pounds" way, but what about always keeping at least one surface clear, and maybe putting flowers (or a flowering plant) there? Or ditching all of the clothes you don't wear so that you face your gloriously minimized but totally wearable closet with a smile? I'd say you could act as someone else's fairy godmother but that's sort of incorporated in being a mom -- be your own fairy godmother and make the month leading to your birthday a little more beautiful.

Amma Always

You are adorable and I will never believe you are turning 40! After all what does that say about me? Wait...ummm...(crickets chirping)... OH NO! Man the life boats! We're going down!


just have the cake and don't worry about the 40 part. After all, 40 is the new 30!


Meh - 40/'s just a number. I am hitting the big 44 this year and thus far - life haven't changed from when I was 34 or 39 or 43.

You will be fine - and then eat cake! :)


Well, then, don't turn 40! Turn 39 again. I've turned 39 three times now, and I highly recommend it.


I think I can help. You. Me. Waffle Bros. It'll be fine.


I think that for your 40th you should consider a nice weekend away. IN GEORGIA. *nodnodnod*


I received a crown when I turne 50 from the kids in the daycare across the hall from my office. They were so excited for me, a birthday AND A CROWN. It would have been wrong to break down and cry in front of them!


I turned 40 in July and I am here to say that 40 is good. Turning 40 also beats the alternative.

Jill W.

I think Mir is right. Nothing like a great girlfriend to ease you through the big day.

I spent my 40th (2 years ago) out of town with my sister and my best friends. We had a spa day, a glorious dinner at a great little Italian restaurant and then a relaxing brunch the next day. It was fabulous and totally took the sting out of 40.

Amy know I am turning 51 just mere days before this catastrophe...right? 40 is great! It's a milestone! It's all about the "I can't BELIEVE *YOU* are 40!" 51 is...meh..51. It's the "So you're a grandmother of 10? Thought so." Sigh....


Sheesh, don't be silly. I was born in '71 and I won't be forty for at least...
I think I need a calculator, there's something off here.

Salome Ellen

I'll trade you -- I have 16 days until 60.


40 is lovely! I loved my 40s. However... I spent my 49th year freaking THE HELL OUT about turning 50. Four years later, I wonder what I was worried about.

Meh. It's just a number.


I'm one of the freaks who gets worked up about non milestone birthdays. Usually, when my next oldest sibling turns a milestone, I get freaked out. At his 40th, I was told to lighten up, I was sucking the life out of the party. I was 37 and completely upset about someday being 40. I feel your pain is what I'm saying.


40 is the new 15. No worries! I, being 31, just completely flipped out because I was the same age as Roseanne Conner from tv. Well, almost. When the show started her character was 33. I'm as old as ROSEANNE!!!! AHHHHH!

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