Forty. Here it is. That number. But that’s all it is, a number.

I can tell you I do not feel forty years old. Some days I still feel like I am eight and cooking in the kitchen with my mom, sixteen and soaking up lazy summers, somewhere in my twenties running around a city or lost in the blur of my thirties. Ah, the thirties really were a blur of babies and acclimating to suburbia.

My thirties shifted. My easy existence vanished when I lost my brother at thirty eight. Forced changes. Thirty nine was a year of loss for me. The loss of my dear brother, loss of bad habits, loss of weight (which was clearly from some of those bad habits), shedding of relationships that were no longer healthy (everything from people to the NEED for daily hard core exercise that wasn’t serving me well), releasing fears and hesitations… I lost the propensity to care about things that just did not matter anymore (if they ever did).

What this means though, in the end, is I also had a year of gains. Big important gains. Newfound confidence, a steadiness that came from knowing I didn’t crumble after a terrible trauma. Stronger relationships with those I love and new friendships that are invaluable. I gained back the time that I was wasting on unnecessary things. What a gift.

While Thad isn’t here to celebrate with me on this “big important” birthday like I was for his; I can see he is there providing me with steady ground on which to stand and he is holding me up from below. That’s a gift too.

So I get to head into the next decade feeling quite balanced, strong psychically and mentally and looking forward. I can’t wait to see what I can do and what will unfold.







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