Thoughts about Reaching my XXth Birthday

Today is my 39th birthday. I know. Women aren’t supposed to tell anyone their age. I don’t really subscribe to that thought. I have worked hard to make it through my 39 years and I am proud of that. Plus, I’ve been saying I was 39 all year and thought I was going to be 40 today until I did the math.

I’ve heard the memory goes as you age, but I didn’t think it would go this quickly!

I now have a second year of being 39! Inorite? I get one more year before the dreaded 40, an age where I’ve heard that everything starts falling off (but not the things that you want to fall off– like the middle-age spread). I might have a 3rd year of 39 just to be safe.

Not enough candles, but you get the idea!

In the past week leading up to this glorious day, I’ve done some thinking. I don’t know about you guys, but this is the time when I look back at my year and see how I’ve done. Forget New Year’s Day– that is for everyone else. I’ve got to be different! Oh, side note: July 2nd is halfway through the year. I didn’t know that. My friend told me. I didn’t research it so if I’m wrong, let me know. I’ll probably forget though. Because I forgot I was 38, remember?

This year’s taking stock of my life has been very different from all of the others. Usually I get very depressed and think of all of the things that have gone wrong. I focused on how worthless and imperfect I was. Death loomed ever closer in my mind and I would never be able to make something of myself. I usually spent a whole week alternately crying and getting angry. I hated my birthday and never wanted to celebrate it. Well, this year I did none of that. Okay, that wasn’t completely true. I did cry a little last night, but I think it was more because I was worn out and it was late and I forgot to eat dinner. Probably. Still, it was only about ten minutes long, if that, and I fell asleep right after.

Instead of looking at my life negatively, I’ve chosen to look at it differently. Even thought there were difficult times, I made it through them. Sometimes I learned something about myself. Sometimes I was just happy to get out of it with only a few scratches on my psyche. Amazingly, the scratches were few. I’ve become a much stronger woman because of it. The difference is that I’ve actually been in a state of mind where I could actually see the strength. Part of it I attribute to finally finding the correct melange of medicine. The majority of it, though, is all me. Yes, my meds have balanced my brain chemistry, but I have chosen to do the work to make myself stronger.

Happy birthday to me.

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All photos that are not mine are under a CC license. For more information about this wonderful resource, go to www.creativecommons.org

Cake Photo: Neil T via flickr

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14 thoughts on “Thoughts about Reaching my XXth Birthday

  1. Happy happy birthday! Hope you have a great birthday and a great year and ALLLLLL the greatness. I know you will.

    I always look back over my year on my birthday, too. I get that. Some of it’s good, some bad. I’m glad you had more good than bad.

  2. 40 is just the beginning of the best part of your life,, when you begin to see the things in your life that are important.

    • I was more afraid of 30. I had all these GOALS that I set for myself and hadn’t achieved them. I was very disappointed in me. Now I just look back and laugh!

  3. Ive been trying to think of something clever to say about mistaking yourself for 40 and the fact that u hate math, but I don’t want to sound mean…so I will just say Happy Not 40th Birthday! Next year we will have to arrange for some black balloons to celebrate actually being over the hill 🙂 Best wishes today.

    • It wouldn’t have sounded mean at all. I don’t HATE math… I just can’t do it when people are watching me… or count years of living.

      You set it up and I will be there for the party on my 40th! =P

  4. Happy Birthday to my wonderful and lovely wife. You are just as beautiful as the first day that we met 11 years ago on July 4th. I love you dearly!

  5. Happy Birthday, Elizabeth!

    I’m glad you embraced your birthday as a positive this year. And, I love that your birthday is your “new year.” That actually makes more sense to me than New Year’s Eve.

    I loved your closing reflection that meds help, but you’ve “chosen” to do the hard work of finding your strength. I hope you are proud of yourself for that. (I’m saying that in all seriousness in a non-preachy way.) I know how hard what you’re doing is, and how awesome you are for doing it (and talking about it).

    When I turned 40, I told everyone I was 21 with 19 years of experience. So, every year thereafter, I’m celebrating the anniversary of my 21st birthday.

    Cheers to you!

    • Thank you so much. Your comment means so much to me. I am very glad that I met you. You are so supportive and caring. I never thought that blogging would lead me to such wonderful people.

      I liked 32. I was stable (a job, a house, a loving husband) but had few responsibilities. My daughter wasn’t born yet. Oh, and we had extra money because, well, no kid. Now that my brain is stabilized, I think it is going to get even better than that!

  6. Happy birthday, Elizabeth! I hope things went well for you! Try not to worry too much about age; thirty-nine is awful young to a w-h-o-l-e lot of folks!

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