The other night, I was lying in bed, mulling over the fact that soon I will be 40 years old. I know, you’ve seen my picture on my bio and you think, 40?! I easily pegged you at 27ish. I get it all the time actually . . . okay . . . mainly from myself, but that’s neither here nor there.

What is here is the fact that not only do I know I’m soon to be 40, but my body, people around me and my internet search history know it, too. I’ve tried to very lovingly and whole-heartedly embrace the new journey that is quickly approaching but it’s hard.

I remember when I couldn’t wait to be ten and in the double digits. That quickly died out to waiting impatiently to become a teenager. Then I waited to be 16 so I could date, and then 18 so I could pretend to be an adult, and finally 21 when I was adulting. 

What I don’t remember is ever saying, how much I couldn’t wait to be 40.

In fact, I remember thinking how old 40 was and that I’d probably be a decrepit old lady, walking with a cane and a Nanny McPhee type mole thing going on. I can’t imagine what kind of 40-year-old I’ll be but I know I can’t avoid it. I mean, I know I can only ride out this, “I’m 27ish” thing for so long, right? After a long hard talk with myself on living in reality, I decided the best way to deal with turning 40  would be to grab a notepad and write down everything that’s happening in my life that’s pointing to my next birthday. When I was done, I’d actually laughed more than I’d cried.

Here’s my list of 25 tell-tale signs that I’m turning 40:        

  1. My daughter’s look of amazement when I sing a song from “her generation”
  2. Commenting how late it is, then looking at my watch that reads “7:30 p.m.”
  3. The fact that #2 is actually about a watch, not a smartwatch
  4. A multitude of gray hair you know where
  5. My body’s theme music is “snap, crackle, pop”
  6. Getting offended when the waiter doesn’t card me
  7. Spicy food’s amazing entrance and unrelenting exit
  8. Being asked if I want my mustache waxed along with my eyebrows
  9. Wondering if my new outfit screams, “sexy” or “mid-life crisis”
  10. Googling “how to make kitten heels look sexy”
  11. Googling “how long til menopause”
  12.  Recognizing my high school closet in the vintage section of the thrift store
  13. Drinking coffee for breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  14. Constantly commenting, “This new generation is something else!”
  15. Buying push-up bras to one-up gravity
  16. Finally embracing the fact that people’s opinions are just that . . . theirs
  17. Finally believing I haven’t failed as a Momma
  18. Wishing I’d started the habit of exercising when I was 20
  19. Squinting when reading even though I don’t have to
  20. Apologizing for excessive flatulence due to a much-needed increase of fiber
  21. “Wait, did I tell you this already?” is my new catch phrase
  22. Waking up mid sleep not realizing I was asleep
  23. Only purchasing ointments, body washes, and lotions with the words, “firming, tightening, or smoothing” written on the label
  24. Looking at my Momma, realizing how gracefully I’m going to age
  25. Embracing the life God has given me thus far, ready to tackle whatever lies ahead

Danielle Lyles

Danielle Lyles, is a freelancer and screenwriter from St. Louis, Missouri. A seasoned Navy wife and momma of 4, she enjoys writing faith-based films and blogging about the African American parenting and military experience. She’s been featured as a guest blogger on Army Wife 101 and currently writes for Purpose Driven Women Magazine launching in 2018.