I'm just like you. Well in many ways I'm sure we are alike. I'm 40 and single. Some of you might have children, I don't. I work full time in a big city where dating life is, ahem, unpredictable. I've created a life here but I dream of escaping it. This life I've created is so wonderful and so depressing at the same time. Some days I shout "freedom!" at being single and not tied down, and other days I feel like I totally screwed it up and I'm breathing in a paper bag curled up in the fetal position crying for my mom to make it all better.
I have to admit I can get pretty pissed off about things. Oh, so many things I should have checked off the list by now. Husband, house, children, family, a lot more travel, dream job. And to be fair, I've done some of that stuff. Married...check...college degree...check...divorced...check.
So I've tried and failed at some things, and now that I'm all grown up I'm READY to dust myself off and start over because I know that I am the creator of my reality. I know that I can make a REALLY WONDERFUL AND SATISFYING life for myself. So things didn’t turn out the way I thought they would by forty, nobody's perfect, I've forgiven myself for my screw-ups. And despite my questionable future I stay positive about the possibilities. But I need help, so I invite YOU, THE READER to assist me as I find my way. Let’s share our journey's together here on in The Forty Diaries.
Midwest Mom, 40, Married with children, Missouri
I don’t feel forty. People tell me I don’t look forty. But it’s true, I’m forty. My life on paper is very much what you would expect for a typical forty-year-old woman living in the Midwest. Married with two kids, a mortgage, minivan, dog, etc. I turned forty four months ago. My 5th decade began in a new town where I have not made a single friend or found a job. So why do I feel so disconnected from my demographic? For starters, I had a very unconventional childhood (more on that later) and I started my own family much later in life than most. I had my first child at 35 and my second at 37.
So picture me at the playground around the young Midwest moms. I am quite a bit older than them and have a hard time relating. They huddle talking about bands I’ve never heard of and lament about their impending 30th birthdays with dread. On the occasion that I do find other moms my age, it can be as equally uncomfortable because most 40-year-old parents have children in middle school while mine are in pre-school! The other moms are worried about having “the talk,” setting boundaries for texting and time on facebook. I am worried about potty training and transitioning them from pre-school to kindergarten.
I am thankful to Maggie for starting this blog. I want to help her with her journey and also use it as an opportunity to kick start my own journey into the 40’s. No doubt it’s time to reconnect and redefine myself, thanks Maggie for the reminder! Stay tuned for details, because this mini-van driving Midwest Mama may be 40, but she is also going to make it a fabulous year!!
BFF, 39 1/2, San Francisco
Is, but not limited to, a whole list of contradictions like: Hyper-responsible wild child, Monogamous hippie chick, Over working free spirit, Over educated underachiever, Kindergarten teacher/bartender, Street wise with socialite capacities, Nature worshipping city dweller, Organic eating tequila drinker, Gypsy traveling home lover, Small frame/big attitude, Grounded spiritual seeker, Meditating, fun loving party girl who strives to keep it all in check.