A couple of years ago, I turned 40. With the advent of this new decade of life (and some time under my belt), I’ve learned a few things. Now I’m rewriting the rules for my middle of life.
I’ve learned a few things about my body.
*It’s a harder to drop the weight, but the glass of wine, goat cheese and crackers are worth the extra steps. Know the difference between eating for joy and eating to cope.
*I still have the ability to make boys smile. Never mind that they are my sons and they smiled because I took a turn or two on the slip ‘n slide with them this summer. Their smiles are worth more.
*The gray hairs aren’t so bad. Especially when you cover them up with purple.
*Teeth are priceless. Literally. I have the dental bill to prove it. Take care of them early.
I’ve learned a few things about friendships.
*They are worth the effort. Find your tribe and invest in it deeply. You will reap invaluable rewards for doing so.
*Write notes for no special occasion and mail them to your friends. They will always arrive at just the right time. They arrive in your mailbox too.
*Coffee is better when there are two cups, even if you don’t chat over them.
*Miles only change the friendship if you let them. When physical distance happens, work harder to make sure spiritual distance doesn’t.
I’ve learned a few things about marriage.
*It is the hardest thing you’ll ever do.
*You will learn more about yourself through your marriage than almost anything else you will ever be involved in.
*It requires a lot of strength and dying to self, but also vulnerability and self-preservation.
*If you can make it work with your spouse, you’ve done no small thing, and if you can’t, that was probably no small thing either.
I’ve learned a few things about freedom.
*There is always a price to pay for it. Whether on an actual battlefield or in the battlefield of the soul; someone, somewhere pays for it.
*I’ve learned that if I want to be free, then I need to let other people be free too.
*I’ve learned that I am my own worst tyrant.
*The worst cage is fear, and I am usually the one with the key to it.
I’ve learned a few things about happiness.
*It doesn’t look anything like what I thought it would.
*Happiness is fickle, but joy has staying power rooted in hope.
*I’ve learned you can only ride on the happiness of others for so long.
I’ve learned a few things.
*Accept my body
*Love more deeply
*And before this next decade is over? … Expect to learn a few more.
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