So here’s a fact I am actually embracing.
I’m going to be 40 years old. Tomorrow.
Most of my friends who are in their 20s and below still can’t comprehend my age. I’m sure I was the same way. Apparently “boring” is supposed to be a title overwhelmingly achieved when people hit 30.
And several of them, upon asking if I’m doing something to celebrate, seem unsure if they are even allowed to say the word “Forty”. Perhaps to them, the number forty is just significant of malt liquor. Maybe it’s the age of people in authority, or the part of life where you really start spending a lot of money on skin care. Or maybe they are simply aware that Marilyn Monroe, Princess Di, JFK Jr, MLK and Jesus had all died before this milestone birthday.
But the way I see it, 40 is sacred.
Jesus fasted for 40 days in the desert. It rained on Noah for 40 days. Moses was on the mountain for 40 days, and the Israelites were in the wilderness for 40 years. Turns out embalming during that time took 40 days as well, but I’m not going to count that in this blog. Lent is 40 days (minus Sundays).
And the Purpose Driven Life takes 40 days to complete. Not saying Rick Warren and the Bible are parallel, just saying.
Psalm 40 – I waited patiently upon the Lord….he heard my cry….he lifted me….he set my feet on solid ground…..he has given me a new song….
Isaiah 40 – To whom can compare to God….Look up to the heavens, who created the stars?….He never grows weak or weary…He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless..but those who trust in the Lord will find new strength, they will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint.
So it seems that 40 is really the beginning. Everything up until now has just been a suggestion. Practice. Trial.
What I truly loved about my 30s was a sudden understanding that I really didn’t care what people thought. I didn’t have to follow every fashion trend. I don’t need to understand just why the world works the way it does, and I’m also realizing more and more just how little I know about just about everything.
40 is just a number. I’ll still be wearing Doc Martens and Chuck Taylors on most days. I’ll still do the majority of my work in my pjs and will continue to drink too much coffee. But now, on surveys, when I check that 40-44 age group box, I can look back at the previous boxes and be so thankful for an interesting, full life—and even more look forward to the boxes yet to come.