I’m turning 40 so why do I feel 14? When I was 14, 40 sounded like 80. Now 40 is fast approaching and I feel both unworthy and un-forty. Don’t get me wrong, I am thrilled to see 40! But I feel there is not much difference between the 14 year old me and the almost 40 year old me. I don’t always know who I want to be when I grow up. I struggle with deciding what to wear. I get sidetracked by who is saying or doing what. I don’t always do homework, finish chores or make my bed.
When I was 14 I wanted to be who I’ve become. (Writer, mama, photographer, wife, teacher.) 40 is beckoning me to become a better version of who I am, but to also revisit who I would like to be. There were several inward qualities I wished to possess when I was 14. I wanted to have an internal peace that overflowed into the lives of those around me. I wanted to feel special and make others feel celebrated. I wanted to look in the mirror and not despise what I saw. My big forehead, wide eyes, squishy nose, dark skin and thinning hair.
Have you ever looked at an old photo and remembered exactly what you were thinking/felt at the time it was taken? In the photo on the left I remember feeling too tall, skinny, dark and that my hair was too short. (I was wearing weave way before it was popular.) Little did I know, that would be my height for the rest of my life. Skinny was something I’d later covet, and have to work hard to maintain. My skin color was a gift from God that I would grow to love. Later in life, I would constantly cut my hair to keep it short. My husband has loved every feature I used to loathe since we were teens. A conversation with the 40 year old me would have yielded less tears and suicidal thoughts. Now, those 14 year old insecurities have been replaced by 40 year old inquiries. Do I learn to swim, speak Spanish fluently, have another baby, keep doing photography, or pursue another degree?
40 is a number I never thought would apply to me. When I was young I was convinced I wouldn’t live beyond age 36. My dad died at 36. My mom had a brain aneurysm at 36. 40 is significant because it’s something I didn’t foresee and I want to embrace and celebrate it in a special way. I plan to write every day for 40 days. My hope is to explore different aspects of who I am and who I hope to become. Join me on my journey as I blog my way to 40.
What is the difference between the 14 year old, and the present you? What are some similarities?