When it comes to some of the usual "by the time, I'm 40, I want ______," I'm pretty content. Marriage, kids, family & friends, career, home - it's all there and I'm grateful.
There's not a thing that I think of and say to myself, I thought I would have done that by now. Over lunch with a friend a few weeks ago, I was shocked to hear her say that 40 was tough because she thought she would have accomplished so much more. This was coming from one of the most accomplished women I know!
I don't know about the rest of you, but I am planning to be around for a long time, leaving me many decades to accomplish all the things on my list: writing a novel, learning calligraphy, taking up Spanish, finally putting together baby books for the kids, filling out an A-cup.
Now more than ever, there's no deadline for accomplishing things - plenty of really successful people didn't get their careers cooking until after 40 (Julia Child quite literally!), love is often there when you least expect it (my husband's grandfather fell deeply, madly in love in his nineties), there are so many friendships yet to forge, and babies are entering women's(and men's)lives in all different decades.
But I'm goal-oriented; I can't help it, so there are a couple of things I'm determined to do in the next year, which will make my 40th a bit more satisfying:
1. Visit Aunt Junie and Uncle Walter. Aunt Junie is my beloved grandmother's best friend. My grandmother died 11 years ago and that's the last time I saw Aunt Junie. Aunt Junie always remembers me and my kids with birthday cards, addressed with her perfect "Palmer method" handwriting and sometimes filled with a handful of confetti. On this last birthday, she included a photo of herself and Uncle Walter on their 65th Wedding Anniversary. They look so sweet -- I'll have to scan it and add it to this post -- and I'm determined to do the trains/planes/automobiles trip to see them in their remote little town in Upstate New York.
2. Get Heart Healthy. I am not in shape and have never been in shape, so it's time to do something about it. I recently joined the New York Road Runners club and am taking a beginning runners class. The goal is to be able to run 20 minutes non-stop by the end of the 10 week course. Something every 40 year-old should be able to do.
3. Pull the Apartment Together. As much as I loved college, I don't want to live like I'm in college. It's not that bad, but it could be a little nicer.
Three things. That's do-able. What about you? Anything on your list?