I’m turning 40 this year. No big deal honestly, especially since I still feel 28. I know that to a lot of people this is a really big deal. Not so sure it means as much to me. I do feel like I’m changing though. Evolving, maybe? I feel like a different person today than I was last year, and definitely a different person than I was 4 years ago! Is different, bad? I don’t think so, but maybe others would view it as such in their own lives.
I have so many hats that I wear on a daily basis: mom, wife, doctor, runner, swimmer, writer, president of local running club, PTO member, etc, the list goes on. It’s prioritizing those things that sometimes gets hard. I always try to be mommy first because that is extremely important to me. But then the mommy guilt comes when you need to do something for yourself over your kids. I have found, though, over the last 5 years of running, a new found independence. One that I hadn’t felt in over 6 years prior- with the birth of my first son. At that point, EVERYTHING, and I mean EVERYTHING revolved around him. That continued with my second child, and even the first 18 mos. of my daughter’s life. Then my eyes were opened to the fact that it is ok to think about yourself and take time for me. Of course people told me that through the years, but I never listened. I thought they were crazy actually. How could MY time be more important than my child’s time?
Turning 40 seems to be causing me to think and re-evaluate some things. Sometimes I feel like I put myself first too much- is this selfish? No matter what schedules there are during the day (let’s just say that they are usually very hectic), I always take the time to snuggle my children before they go to bed. That time is precious to me. But do they think that they get enough sometimes? I don’t know. I need to run to keep my mind fresh, to have a more even temperament, to be a better mom. I have a training schedule and must follow it. Sometimes that means that I might miss a practice, or be unable to do the whole homework with them. But I think that this helps build THEIR independence- or that is at least what I tell myself. Lol. But at what point am I putting myself first too much? I do not have the answer to that question. Not sure anyone does though. I am at essentially EVERY game, EVERY major life event, and I am always there when they need me. I get the large majority of my runs/exercise complete while they are at school, or before they even wake up in the morning. I do not want to miss anything.
I am planning on getting a tattoo sometime in the very near future. In the year I’m turning 40, I find it very cliché. I’ve been planning on this for the last 2 years, and enough has happened over the last 2 years that has pushed me to decide that I’m doing it. It helps that a friend wants to get one too and we will go together. I think, though, that people will view this as a mid-life crisis. It doesn’t matter what others think though. As long as I am happy with my decision.
At this point of my life, I feel like a lot of mom’s may go through this, wearing so many hats, that it is difficult to prioritize all of the hats. I have to say that it is hard to be all those people every day. I do my best, but realize that I will fail at some of it. I multitask a lot to accomplish things, but when I run or swim- that is when my mind clears. I do write blogs and formulate articles in my head as I’m running- usually when it’s an easier run. But it is the time of the week where I can just clear my mind- to not have to stress about things that are weighing on my shoulders. That is a reason why I always put exercise toward the top of my priority list. It does make me wonder though, sometimes, what else I am sacrificing to get in my exercise.
At 39, for the first time this past fall, I went on a girls weekend, for a race. It was invigorating to do that. Nothing to worry about except the race for 4 days. It felt strange that I really only had to focus on one hat. But yet it was great. My husband survived the days with the kids and even told me that I could do that a couple times a year. What an amazing husband I have!
And then there’s sexuality. I think that this isn’t something, as an almost 40-year old, that people talk about much. Feeling good about yourself and your body is, I think, a very important part of our lives. Especially as we are getting older. I use the term “older” very lightly. I do not feel almost 40, so I do not think of myself as “old.” I feel like 40 is the new 30. It takes hard work to look good and feel good. I feel like I put a lot of work into feeling and looking this way. I run about 35 miles a week currently- will get it back up to 45 soon, swim twice a week, eat a vegan diet, and limit junk food. Yes I have my weaknesses, which lately has been wine, but I think that is human. I then question, if you feel younger than you are, is it OK to dress younger- without being promiscuous? If you have a good body, is there any reason that you shouldn’t wear clothes that flatter it, without being a sex symbol? My mentality on all this has changed recently, as sometimes things happen that make you feel better about yourself, make you feel more confident, more appealing, sexier. Confidence is key in feeling good about yourself. I think that a lot of women lack confidence, especially as we get older. As a mom, I feel like we get caught in this “mommy” look and feel stuck. There is no reason for us, as women, to get stuck in that. We can be beautiful both inside and out and showing our confidence will also show our beauty. Be empowered- that is something that I have started feeling more over the last couple of weeks. Be strong.
At the ripe age of 39, another way I have found myself evolving- my drink preference. By that, I do not mean my everyday drinking water. I mean, my social, enjoyable drinking. Whenever we went out, I was always a Corona kind of girl, and if options were limited, would end up with Dos Equis, but I just prefer Corona. Over the last couple of months, wine has definitely taken a new appeal. I found Riesling to be sweet and taste really good- this became mine new drink of choice for social settings. Over the last couple of weeks, a friend introduced me to Sauvignon Blanc. It also is delicious- sweet, yet a little more dry. It’s always good to be open to different options- and sometimes things get “sweeter with age!”
No time in the near future will I be buying a new 2-seater Audi or Mazaradi, so this rules out mid-life crisis to me! Lol. I will just keep juggling my hats, hoping that I have prioritized the right order, not sacrificing too much of any one thing. I will also make sure to keep building my confidence and strength to be a strong woman.
#neverquit #keepfightingthegoodfight #mommystrong