I am not the only one of my friends who happens to be turning 40 this summer. I am not the only one who appears to be struggling with this, and struggling to find the reason they’re struggling with it. Everyone is approaching the issue differently, but internally, I think we’re all freaking out a tad.
The funny thing is, I think the reason we’re not sure why we’re freaking out is because the panic around turning 40 seems to be fabricated by the culture around us. It’s all about the concept of being “over the hill” after 40, or the “40 before 40” list pressure, as if there’s no time to try something new or experience something different once you’re out of your 30’s.
I was driving the other day to meet a friend for lunch and ruminating on the fact that this year has been so busy that I never found time to create a “40 before 40” list. Had I made one, there’s no way I would have accomplished any of it in the scant amount of downtime my current schedule allows for.
And then I realized how incredibly stupid the concept is.
I mean, why?
WHY a list of things that MUST be done, tried, accomplished before turning 40?
Is it that after it’ll be too late? New things must be experienced or at the very least attempted before?
What, somehow on July 23rd it’ll be too late for me to go on a hot air balloon ride? Sheer an alpaca? Attempt to cook something exotic I’ve never attempted before?
That seems… ridiculous. No?
But, apparently, that’s what main stream media would like us to believe.
And I’m calling B.S.
First of all, how many people, before 40, have the kind of disposable income it takes to accomplish the sorts of “dreams” people put on their 40 before 40 lists?
Second, I’m sorry, but most people are a tad busy in their 30’s what with kids and careers and all that jazz. Some days it’s a miracle when your socks match, let alone when you attempt to think of something new to try.
So I’m instituting a new type of list. A sort of celebration of 40 and beyond. Of all the living there’s yet to do.
I’m calling it the 40 After 40 list.
It’s going to be full of awesome, BIG things. Things that remind me how amazing it is that I GET to turn 40. That I am alive and kicking. That I have already accomplished great things and GET to enjoy a lifetime of accomplishing MORE.
Now that’s a list I can get behind. What are you putting on yours?