Yesterday I became a year older. “Not a small achievement,” I thought to myself, considering I was convinced I wouldn’t make it past 40 years (I did, have, will continue).
Those were my silly 20-year-old thoughts. The ones you have where you look at your parents and believe them to be ancient. The ones where you can’t imagine growing ‘old’.
Of course, I am now older than my mother was when she became a grandmother. I am twice the age my father was when I was born. I don’t feel old, really, except when my back is sore and I’m limping along, but my mind is not that of a middle-aged woman.
My daughter doesn’t think I’m old. I’ve obviously modelled youthfulness to her. She doesn’t view being over 40 as a fate worse than death. She’s also good for my battle with body image. The thickening is happening and my inability to exercise is not assisting me in my battle to send it packing. She reminds me of all of the things I’ve said to her as she negotiates the maze of the 20s and the expectations on what women her age will look like.
There’s nothing more that I can share with you now. I need to keep things close for a while. I need to process the tumultuous times that have preceded my birthday, the twists and turns that have plagued my little family. We are all coming out the other side. Another year older, maybe wiser, not dead yet.
Here is the delicious lemon meringue pie, made for me by my whizz-in-the-kitchen daughter, as birthday cake.