Here I am. Forty. My 30s are gone, a new decade begun. Officially middle-aged.
It's very odd to have a birthday on New Year's Eve, no matter what age you're turning. You're not just another year older - you have to count down until the whole world is another year older, too.
At least I have company.
Add to it the fact my sister was born on the exact same day, six years earlier. My mother likes to tell anyone who'll listen that we're really twins. Imagine THAT gestation. The other thing that we heard constantly growing up that, since my dad was a CPA, they got some nice tax deductions.
At any rate, I never imagined I'd be pregnant at 40. Isn't that the old joke? Better to be 40 than pregnant? Well, now I'm both. Thirty weeks pregnant. Forty years old. The good news is my belly is so big I can't see if there's anything turning grey Down There, if you know what I'm saying.
So for me, this is what preggo and 40 looks like (don't worry, I won't chew off your arm if you get too close; despite how, um, chubby I appear, I do have SOME self-control when it comes to ingesting anything within reach).
Really, it was a fabulous day. The kids made me breakfast. They were quite proud. And I don't think anyone even stuck a finger in a nose to add some extra "flavoring."
David then took Sawyer and Sage on a hike and to the park. I dashed out to the mall, where, in a huge score, I purchased the dress in the pictures - it was marked at $34, but when I went to the register, it rang up at $17! Still exciting, even though it IS maternity.
We had a big night out planned. David surprised me with tickets to see Wicked up at the Pantages Theater in Hollywood. I was SO excited; I'd read the book years ago and had wanted to see the show, but we never seem to do stuff like that.
I got all dressed up and felt like, you know, a grown-up.
We grabbed a quick dinner and headed up to LA. The show was AMAZING. I swear I kept tearing up by the wicked awesomeness of it all (yeah, I don't get out much). It was David's first show and he really liked it, too, which made it even better.
So that's how I spent my first day as a 40-something. I'm feeling pretty optimistic about how this decade is going to go. For me, my 30s were full of permanent life alterations: I met and married David, had two children, conceived another, and left my career. My grandfather died, then my father.
I already know we'll be welcoming a new life into our world in just a couple months. And then it's back to trying to lose all the weight I've so competently put on. Back to running. I'm looking forward to feeling my body in motion again.
I'll need the energy: by the end of this decade, I'll have two teenagers in my house.
I guess the biggest lesson I'm learning is to live in the moment instead of looking ahead all the time.
It's something easy to do when you're on a long training run or in the midst of a marathon: you can't be thinking about mile 18 or 26 when you're only at mile 4. You just have to get through it and count your blessings along the way. You have to take in the scenery. Laugh with your training partners. Be thankful for the little stuff, like cloud cover, a slight breeze or a friend suddenly pulling out a pack of peanut-butter pretzels at exactly the right moment.
And when you think you can't go one more step, when your calves are cramping and the finish line seems an eternity away, remember that this too shall pass.
Love the good times. Embrace the tough times. Be open to what might be around the corner, but make the most of what - and who - is with you right then.
Don't look back too much, mourning the passage of youth and cuteness, but instead be secure in the hard-earned knowledge that you can still Kick Ass.