Everyone says that time goes by so fast, but I never saw it pass... it just kinda did. In the blink of an eye, I went from 20 to nearly 40. If you're nearing, turning or past the big 4-0, here's one for you...
I so enjoyed Pamela Redmond Satran's amazing Glamour article, 30 Things Every Woman Should Have and Should Know by the Time She's 30. Shockingly, I could check many of those items off my own to-do list. What's more shocking is that I'm not 30 anymore, not even close.
A whole decade has passed. Where did it go? A great husband, multiple careers, a recession, two incredible children and the blink of an eye later, I'm turning the corner on 40. There are many subtle yet life-changing differences a decade makes. So, here goes: (It may not be as elegantly stated as the original, but hey, I'm a humor columnist):
By 40, you should have...
- Access to a great therapist, a great dry cleaner, a great hair stylist and a great lawyer... but mostly a great therapist.
- Cellulite that you play with when you sit "criss cross applesauce."
- The knowledge that the position I just referred to was once un-PC-ishly called "Indian Style."
- Enough videos and pictures of your children to fill a credenza.
- A credenza.
- Worry lines from every bruise, bump and first day of school that you lovingly freaked out about.
- Gray hairs from every tantrum, debate and negotiation you lost to a toddler.
- A designer handbag that's so pricey you would sell it on Craigslist if you didn't think someone would murder you at the pick up.
- A designer for Target item, which you don't like and doesn't fit, but you wear anyway because you had to fight another woman for it.
- A drawer filled with mostly unsuccessful creams/scrubs/supplements for your cellulite, stretch-marks, dark puffy circles and increasingly dry skin.
- A cabinet filled with wraps/casts/prescriptions for your bad lower back, arthritic toe, irritable bowel, adult onset ADD or carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Broken capillaries from exfoliating hard enough to erase your crows feet. Freakin' crows feet!
- Laugh lines from being a total dork with your kids and spider veins that your kids affectionately compare to tattoos.
- Saggy boobs that have been blown up and deflated with each pregnancy, like a Snoopy in a Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade.
- A great foundation (even though you swore you'd never wear one) that's not cakey and covers redness and freckles -- also known as rosacea and age spots.
- Enough success in parenting that you have faith you're kids will turn out okay (Well, maybe with minimal psychoanalysis.)
- A bathing suit or shorts that you should no longer be wearing. A fact everyone is aware of but you.
- The ability to pull off heels, flats or a ponytail with almost anything.
- A pair of jeans that are too tight that you refuse to throw away because those 5 lbs. you haven't been able to lose this decade will come off, you just know it.
- You've spent enough time chasing dreams to know that they can be caught. (Oh, I can be beautifully sentimental when I wanna be!)
- When people call you ma'am, they're trying to be polite, even though it sounds REALLY rude.
- How to cook at least a week's worth of meals. (I mean, if someone had a gun to your head.)
- Enough about politics to have a position on healthcare and taxes, even if that position is to not have one.
- That you DID become your parents, even though you swore you wouldn't.
- How to throw together a bus stop/carpool appropriate outfit in under two minutes.
- That said outfit does not need to include makeup, shoes or a bra... yes, even pants are optional.
- How to make a man happy in five minutes or less. For your benefit... and his, but mostly yours. (Hello, there are reality shows to be watched.)
- At least one man who knows how to satisfy you... and hopefully you're married to him.
- That as your parents age, you need to start checking how much they tip the waitress.
- 40 is nowhere near as old as it seemed when you were 20.
- That most of the celebrities you wanted to be like in your 20s and 30s have things that are fake, enhanced or airbrushed.
- That said celebs are now nearing or over 40, themselves!
- That it's okay to have the fake hair, fake lashes, fake nails and any other falsie, if you so desire. (see 11.)
- Gas is still funny... maybe funnier.
- That your parents didn't know any more about raising children than you do.
- How to get kids out the door for school in 10 minutes because YOU overslept.
- That Spanx are like chocolate or cheese -- they make everything better.
- That you're just like you were in your 20s, only savvier and less bendy.
- That you can survive on two hours of sleep each night for six months.
- That you can't fight it anymore -- You are officially a WOMAN -- and that's not such a bad thing to be.
The almost 40, Jenny From the Blog (The Jen X Pert)