That hair in the middle of my cheek…

Chinese_Facial_threading_in_london I’ve been getting a lot of positive energy and uplifting posts from women who are either anxiously awaiting forty, or looking back at it as the best time of their lives.  Their honest stories are encouraging and uplifting, but…

That’s only part of the story.  All of us aren’t flying headlong into forty, feeling fabulous and embracing getting older. I’m asking women to be real here, so I guess that reality check has to start with me. There are things I DON’T like about turning forty and a few things I thought would be very different. I have a lot of plans and dreams that I hope to fulfill in my fortieth year, and I’m looking forward to taking on those challenges, but the reality, for me at least, is that not everything about turning forty has been fabulous.  And part of turning forty for me is being able to admit that. So, here are a few things that I don’t find at all fabulous about my road to forty…

That hair in the middle of my cheek

WTH? Please don’t act like you don’t know what I’m talking about. I’ve seen you in my rearview mirror desperately plucking at your cheek, chin and/or upper lip (what is it about car windows that makes us think there’s some sort of shield blocking us.) And, It’s never apparent in the bathroom mirror, in the privacy of my own bathroom in the morning. No, it, the hair, always decides to rear its long, ugly head while I’m sitting across the table from some perfectly made up, facial hair-less neophyte. That hair in the middle of my cheek…yeah, I could do without that.

Snap, crackle pop

I remember when that was the sound cereal made when you poured milk on it. Now it’s the sound I hear when I am running…ok walking, up the stairs. Granted, it’s my fault, I have not done a great job of keeping in shape, so I’ll take all the blame. Nevertheless, it’s still not a sound, or feeling I enjoy. Which brings me to my next observation…

I’m still struggling with my weight

A more accurate description would be, my weight is still kicking my ass.  I suppose this is my issue, my cross to bear, the battle that when I win, and I did say when, I’ll achieve that next level of Zen. Nevertheless, I’m annoyed at myself for still struggling with it after all these years.

Speaking of a cross to bear

I used to have a photographic memory. Yes, it was decades ago, but I had it. I remember taking tests and closing my eyes, seeing a vision of a page in my mind’s eye, scrolling down to the section with the answer and seeing the words clearly. Would you believe me if I told you I had to double check to make sure I spelled the word “bear” properly when I used it above? In fact, I’m still not sure, but the other “bare” means naked right? And this is not that kind of blog. Believe me, caus’ if you ask me the next time you see me, I won’t remember.

Get glasses Alice

If you’re forty or older, you might remember a commercial back in the day when Alice needed glasses and her husband kept telling her “get glasses Alice!”  Fast forward a couple of decades and Alice is now me. In fact, I have quite a few additional, very clever “things I don’t like about turning forty” comments I’d like to make, but I can no longer see my keyboard. I know, I know…get glasses Grace.

Don’t leave me hanging. I KNOW there are many other things out there we don’t like about turning forty. Please let’s share them with each other.  If you don’t I will have to turn this into a “bare” blog, and trust me, no one is ready for that. You can share your thoughts anonymously (or woman up to them) either by commenting on this post, or sending and email to contribute@womenatforty.com.

Photo: Chinese facial threading in London – facial hair is nothing new

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  • Tamika

    Thanks for sharing! I can relate to most of what you mentioned… especially the random facial hair! For the most part, I'm looking forward to turning 40, but I'm most afraid of not not having achieved real professional success once I'm there. By 40, I figured that I would be the woman that I've been idealizing in my head for as long as I can remember. However, I don't feel as if I've even scratched the surface. I still don't dress the way I thought I would and have readily accepted that my bikini days are FOREVER behind me. On a deeper level, I'm afraid that who I am today is all that I will ever be… and today, that just doesn't seem good enough. Nevertheless, I'm hopeful and striving.

  • womenatforty

    Wow Tamika,

    That was deep. Thank you for sharing. You made a lot of really important points. I think when we're younger we have this vision of life based on what I like to call “naive conceit.” And we spend years trying to live up to an image of ourselves we created when we were still pretty…well…dumb. So I think (and I'm also talking to myself here) that we need to be more forgiving and less judgmental of ourselves. We'd never go up to a stranger and see the fullness of her life, struggles and all and say “yeah, that's interesting, but I thought you would have been a _____ by now.” At least most of us wouldn't. So why do we do it to ourselves?

    As for forever being who you are today, rumor has it that who you are today is not someone to be sneezed at, so embrace it. That said, the only time we stop growing and learning is when we give up. And something tells me that giving up is no where in your future.
    P.S. my bikini days are so far behind me, I was a fetus then.

  • Tamika

    Thanks for sharing! I can relate to most of what you mentioned… especially the random facial hair! For the most part, I'm looking forward to turning 40, but I'm most afraid of not not having achieved real professional success once I'm there. By 40, I figured that I would be the woman that I've been idealizing in my head for as long as I can remember. However, I don't feel as if I've even scratched the surface. I still don't dress the way I thought I would and have readily accepted that my bikini days are FOREVER behind me. On a deeper level, I'm afraid that who I am today is all that I will ever be… and today, that just doesn't seem good enough. Nevertheless, I'm hopeful and striving.

  • womenatforty

    Wow Tamika,

    That was deep. Thank you for sharing. You made a lot of really important points. I think when we're younger we have this vision of life based on what I like to call “naive conceit.” And we spend years trying to live up to an image of ourselves we created when we were still pretty…well…dumb. So I think (and I'm also talking to myself here) that we need to be more forgiving and less judgmental of ourselves. We'd never go up to a stranger and see the fullness of her life, struggles and all and say “yeah, that's interesting, but I thought you would have been a _____ by now.” At least most of us wouldn't. So why do we do it to ourselves?

    As for forever being who you are today, rumor has it that who you are today is not someone to be sneezed at, so embrace it. That said, the only time we stop growing and learning is when we give up. And something tells me that giving up is no where in your future.
    P.S. my bikini days are so far behind me, I was a fetus then.

  • Say it loud sister… no matter how much we embrace transitioning into the wiser stages of life it is hard to accept the physical changes. I remember the old Billy Holiday song “Good Morning Heartache”… I start each day with a new ache and pain when I get up to do my morning run… So many things I took for granted like my physical health!!! If there is one thing I would tell my younger self… it is to accept and appreciate my body because I now know that days are coming when I will be wishing to get that body back!

  • womenatforty

    LOL at “Good Morning Heartache” ! I'm so with you on taking my physical health for granted! Why did (and do) I do that?!? And you're soooooo right about telling the younger me to accept and appreciate and care for that body. I have a distant memory of a flat stomach. But I remember thinking during those days that my butt was too big! What a waste! Man if I knew then what I knew now (that one day my belly would be as big as my butt) I would have worked those abs like nobody's business!! But I guess it's still not too late huh?

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