2012 has been a challenging year, so I was pretty excited to drink to its farewell and embark in a fresh list of new year’s resolutions. Then it hit me that January brings also a new Birthday for me and this 2013 has recently seen my 39th going by. Usually I LOVE celebrating my Birthday, but this year I did not feel like it.
The reason? I am 39. For me it is a “bla” number because I am not here nor there. I do not mind time passing by at all but I love whole numbers, or at least what sounds like a whole number in my head.
What really changes when you are 40 and why is it such a big deal?
The law of gravity is trying hard to drag everything down, however I would never ever want to go back to my 20s.
I love too much the sensation of knowing the world better and feeling in control of my passionate Italian nature most of the time. Apparently this is that “maturity” my mother wanted me to have when I was 18 and I did not have a clue what she was talking about. I now know that you cannot develop that maturity before you have experienced life. And now here we are.
This is one of those moments in life that all of us feel as important.
We ponder over our achievements, failures, hopes and worries so far. And then we start making plans for the future. We start planning our next career move, investments for our children’s education, retirement options, a complete check-up on our health and – if we haven’t done it already – we plan of buying a house.
From now on it is all about grown-up stuff that we have avoided facing because, well, we were still too young to think about. But now that we are 40, everything seems to change.
Turning points, this is what they are called.
The greys have never bothered me because I got used to seeing them pop here and there when I was twenty (apparently greying early is a family thing), so I have always coloured my hair creatively. Now I have opted for a messy-curly-blondy -beachy-look that suits my “I am still young and carefree” kind of approach.
Surely a lot of things have changed in the last 20 years of my life and I am not that carefree anymore, but I still believe that being too serious is acting plain boring, no matter your age.
And turning 40 is not that big deal anyway. It is no more than a number in your head, right?
It is when I meet models in their 20s that ask me if my son is my grandchild that I feel uneasy. I instantly think I should be the serious and boring grown up that gives advice to those young and confused girls instead of giggling and discussing fashion trends with them.
Holding on versus letting go
For me turning 40 is about the challenge of balancing your self. I feel I am on top of the mountain of life and I would love to avoid the decline and freeze time. I would love to think that if I hold on to my life as it is now, things will slow down in a Matrix effect.
But instead life continues, everything around changes and I grow older anyway. The risk is to become rigidly rooted to a spot on that mountain because we start experiencing fear. Fear of losing our youth, our beauty, our privileges and most of all we fear failure. Fear is the mother of all evils, and more importantly, it is the mother of inaction.
If you think that if you do not change, everything will stay the same, think back because it is a big fat lie. But there is always a solution, and it is easier than you think.
What life experience has taught me is how to be more and more in control of my emotions. Being calm is the key to access our best resources and find a solution to any problem. There is nothing we cannot do or learn. Nothing. They say that the limit is the sky , but in reality the limit is only our fear.
But how to let go of fear?
Get in touch with your true self and your instincts again. Every time you sense fear polluting your heart, think of your present and be grateful for what you are and what you have. Focus your thoughts on all the things you love. By focusing on what makes you feel happy, you will start living a more beautiful present than ever.