40 and Fierce
Today I turn 40. And on the card I got last week from a dear friend, it said, “Congratulations! 40 and Fierce!” I feel it. This marks the turning of a page into a new chapter in my life. I’m slipping into the decade of my 40’s like a sexy, new Little Black Dress and I don’t give a damn if my mommy tummy shows or I prefer lower heels (or even sensible flats) to go along with it, while still rockin’ the 3 inch heels when I feel like it. (My 20’s were all about wearing the LBD for the first time and testing that out. My 30’s were all about settling into wearing the LBD and mastering feeling great. Metaphor, of course.) I’m filled with gratitude at turning 40. With age comes wisdom and grace. I have been reflecting on some of the best things / people / experiences that have come into my life over the last 40 years. Here’s the short-list (a 100 item list is not in the cards for this post) in no particular order:
He’s 4 and 3/4 years old and he is my greatest treasure in this world. A few weeks ago at dinner we were talking about how Buddha taught to love everyone.
Son: “Mom, weren’t bad guys babies once?”
Son: “Well, shouldn’t we love them? I mean, the grew up and TURNED bad, so we should still love them to turn them good.”
Me: “Yes, I think that’s a good idea.”
The next night at dinner: Son: “Remember when I said we should love bad guys?”
Me: “Yes, what about it?”
Son: “I’m not going to tell my friends at school. They won’t understand why.”
Yep, he’s an old soul alright.
My two best friends from college
Each month we write an email called the Monthly 10. It’s 10 line items of the important things that happened that month. They could be anything from scoring a great deal on a pair of shoes to helping to transition our loved ones into elder care. We don’t respond to each other’s emails, which cuts down on the burden of having to keep it up. And, when we see each other (we all live in three different states and have families and children now) twice a year, we pick up where the last Monthly 10 left off. I’m in awe that I’ve known these to ladies so long. We’ve been through marriages, deaths, births, growing business, retiring from jobs to stay home with our children… I look forward to the next 20 years with them.
This past year, we redid all the stone retaining walls and walkways, added a huge back deck, changed the color of the outside of the house and put in new perennial gardens in the front and back. It looks like a totally different house now!
He plays 6 different instruments – all self taught. The man cooks all our meals (except Thanksgiving and Holiday feasts, I do those) and vacuums and does laundry and meditates. I was introduced to yoga by him. As he says, he’s an all around nice guy. We’ve known each other for 17 years. Married for 12 of them. Marriage takes work but it is so rewarding when done well, by both people, equitably, in metta.
The end of summer clambake
We host it for our family on our back deck. It’s casual, with lobsters, steamers, corn on the cob, coleslaw and lots of melted butter. Heavenly.
My yoga teacher of 16 years
She can speak and contort her body at the same time in this relaxed way as if she’s lounging by the pool with a margarita in her hand. I still can’t get my heels to touch the floor in downward dog. I’m okay with that. I’m in awe of her.
It’s okay to be financially wealthy and kind and buddhist at the same time. This is one that is still a work in progress but I’m manifesting an even more financially secure, abundant lifestyle. I’m talking a million dollars in retirement savings, my son’s college fund paid for upfront, in cash… the big stuff that in my 30’s felt like a dream and lifetime away.
Walking for exercise
I’m up to 3-5 miles per walk. With a little running mixed in. In my 20’s I ran a marathon, then in my 30’s I had a child and got away from running. It’s nice to get back into movement in a gentle way that still helps me get the miles in. It’s very meditative for me. I often listen to dharma talks. See below.
Weekly dharma talks
These are streamed via podcast by Tara Brach, one of my Buddhist teachers. We’ve never met and yet, she has helped to shape so much of my buddhist lifestyle.
The ability to manifest anything in real time
Like the new couch in my front formal living room or the free coffee from a colleague. All in gratitude of course.
My father’s happiness gene
He is one of the most positive people I know. Unconsciously, when hardship arises in my life, I always think, “What would Dad say? What would Dad do?” I draw wisdom from his words and actions, even when I can’t speak to him directly.
A fulfilling soul centered career
I wake up happy every day to go to work. And I don’t actually think of it as work. Also, I love helping and teaching people. And I get paid for it. (Want to know a secret? You can too.)
Dark chocolate anything
Bars. Covered fruit. Trail mix. You name it. If it has dark chocolate, I love it already.
By my beloved doTERRA oil company. I don’t know where I was before I met this oil. It grounds me and uplifts me all at once. I practically bathe in it when I wear it. Daily.
A neutral wardrobe with punches of color
Navy blues, grays, whites, green and a few punches of orange or pink. That’s basically it. And clean lines. Simple design. Classic. So easy to get dressed in the morning. Everything goes with everything so I don’t have to make decisions.
Pinterest cleaning hacks
Anyone else try the two ingredient microfiber couch cleaning recipe?
Mockingbirds, swallows, turkeys and egrets
All which show up weekly in my life. Twice in the past few weeks a turkey has flown across the hood of my car on the highway. And 15 minutes after writing this post an egret flew right over my head. No joke.
The Boston Pops Fourth of July Celebration
Which we can see from our backyard. Granted, we have to stand on our tiptoes and lean to the right in one particular spot, but it still counts in my book.
Being my most zen self most of the time
Even when my emotions are running high. I am a gemini on the cancer cusp after all!
So, what about you? Are you thinking about your goals? Where’s your grateful meter at this stage in your life? What do you feel you want or need help with? I offer spiritual counseling sessions for just this type of thing! Please share a comment below… I love being connected with you all!