Top Ten Reasons to Turn Forty Today

  1. You might finally know what it is you want to be when you grow up
  2. You might finally admit that you are grown up
  3. You no longer spend any effort dwelling on the ways your parents may have done a better job of raising you; so it was dysfunctional–so is almost everyone else’s upbringing that you know
  4. You finally got your marriage right (the second time) and you married the only guy you’ve ever met who was not raised in a dysfunctional home
  5. You have three wonderful kids and you never have to go through childbirth again (or, for that matter, have your wisdom teeth out again, which was much more difficult and painful than having a baby come out of you)
  6. For some reason, and you don’t know why it is, you no longer feel (self-imposed) pressure to have a flawless “beach body” and perhaps you are the most content with your body now, stretch marks and sags and all, then you’ve ever been (contentment is a good thing)
  7. You were on this planet for almost all of the 70’s and it was a good decade, at least for music
  8. You finally learned why you get so many canker sores in your mouth (your dental hygienist recognized that you are sensitive to sodium laurel sulfates–the stuff they put in shampoo, tooth paste etc. to make it slippery) and now you can move beyond “the canker sore era”
  9. It is a great time on this earth for poets (self-publishing is so easy on the internet and poets never made much money anyway; check out my poetry blog at
  10. At age 38, I married the sweetest, kindest, smartest, and most emotionally healthy man possible (a man who willingly–if not enthusiastically–rearranges the furniture every time I get the itch, which is about every two months; a man who listens to my endless crackpot ideas and for the 1 in 25 that might actually merit action, jumps into action and follows through on the idea–picking up where I leave off–left on my own, I have no follow-through; a man who can match my own ability to both see and speak in metaphors). If I can find (or God can bring me) this kind of perfect partner at this point in my life, I cannot wait to see what comes next. I think that this kind of savory, complimentary match comes from us both knowing ourselves and accepting ourselves (and others) with grace. When we were courting, Chris and I were fond of saying “the young cannot know love” (I believe we were quoting Rainer Maria Rilke). Perhaps this is true. If the young cannot know love, perhaps they cannot really value life as us 40 plus-somethings do. I am, thus, excited to be looking out at the rest of my life with my perfect partner, Chris. Hope springs endless this morning.

2 thoughts on “Top Ten Reasons to Turn Forty Today

  1. Hooray! I agree that 40 is a wonderful age. It’s nice to get more confident and secure in ourselves as we get older, to understand what’s really important, and to cherish the relationships that form the core of our lives. Happy happy 40th to you, my amazing friend!

  2. Happy Birthday, Heidi! I’ve been thinking of you for weeks and of your 40th birthday. Hard to believe that we’re no longer in first grade together, or at least in high school. ha!

    I hope that you had a fabulous day, and that this 40th year is the best yet.


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