Here I am, 40 today. And I don't feel all that old. There are days I do, of course. You know, when I try to get up too quickly from playing on the floor with my kids. Or when I catch my reflection in the mirror and see someone else's spotted, veiny legs where mine used to be. Or when I start spouting off unsolicited advice to people who are actually the age I like to think I am.
Each time something happens to me that reminds me that I'm heading into the third act of my life, I am startled and a bit annoyed. It's not that I didn't know these things would happen -- the memory lapses, the slight hair loss, tiring more quickly, sleeping less soundly -- I just thought they would happen, you know, later.
I also realize it is not only skin deep. We are reading all sorts of ludicrous books on feminism that we may never have picked up 15 years ago (for me, it's Fear of Flying.. I'm not knocking Ms. Jong, but I would not have appreciated it in my 30s). We are determining our identities and one step further and more subconsciously, our legacies.