Tag Archives: aging

Have Kids, Will…Turn the Big 4-0!

I’ve put off writing this post since celebrating my birthday two months ago.  I wanted to give it some thought.  I wanted to marinate in being 40.

Leading up to this age, turning 40 seemed like SUCH. A. BIG. DEAL.  Surprisingly, it wasn’t.  It’s an age I’ve been almost looking forward to.  It’s solid without being weighty.  It’s mature without being old.  It’s middle-age.  But isn’t that the best part of a jelly doughnut: the middle?

To kiss my youth goodbye is a little sad, but the riches I’ve gained through experience and meaningful relationships is what makes getting older golden.  I love my family with a ferocity that I never knew existed until I had kids.  I love and respect my friends for all their differences, their strengths and weaknesses,  their struggles and successes, and their willingness to love me back.

I can’t really write about turning 40, or aging in general, without acknowledging some of the things my girlfriends have said since sliding (tripping?) into middle age, things they never would have uttered at 20:

  • “Is there a bar in this strip mall?”
  • “We need to find a bathroom!  Now!
  •  “I might have to go into that Five & Dime and buy some pants in case I pee mine!”
  • “My butt cheeks are sagging.  I need lifts everywhere.”
  • “Is anyone else finding gray pubic hairs?”
  • “It’s 11 o’clock.  Let’s get a drink now and take a nap later.”

So, in appreciation for all the humor, joy, kindness, and love that are yet to be enjoyed…Cheers!  Here’s to turning 40!  I’m happy to be in the middle of my story because, God willing, I’m just getting to the good part.

 

 

 

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Have Kids, Will…Seek Solace in a Roasted Red Pepper!

It’s a dreary day and I should be doing any number of things, but I’m not.  Instead, I’m indulging my funk.  I’m feeling a little worn out. There are mountains of laundry molding away in hampers, dirty dishes crusting into blocks of concrete, wilting plants that need to be put into the ground, and a pair of legs that will be expected to run 13.1 miles this weekend.  I’m not taking care of any of them.

On days like this, when I don’t know what to do with myself because I don’t want to do the things I should be doing, I cook.  And I don’t mean cook in terms of mixing up some mac n’ cheese or heating hot dogs in the microwave, I mean cook cook.  In the winter I’ll make enormous cauldrons of soup…enough to feed my family of six, freeze in multiple containers, share with friends, and eventually, throw away.  Now that it’s warmer out and the farmers’ markets are up and running, I turn my attention to all those deliciously fresh fruits and vegetables.

This morning, after attacking my fridge with the voracity of a starving jackal, I pulled out some berries and rhubarb, red and yellow bell peppers, and a few languishing tomatoes.  The tomatoes went out to the chicken yard as compost.  The rest, though, have served as my salve, my drug, my relief from the monotony of household chores.  The berries and rhubarb made a nice crisp for dessert, which is a treat since we don’t often have dessert at home (yes, I’m one of those moms). The peppers, though, are vegetables that my kids won’t touch but I absolutely love.

As I was slicing into the peppers, especially the red ones, I was struck by how gorgeous that rich, dark color is.  It’s the color of the organs that pulsate inside of us.  Removing the inside membranes and seeds revealed a finely textured surface with just a little bit of juice gently dripping off the edges.  It was downright pornographic! Why are oysters given all the credit for boosting sex drive when they’re gray and slimy and ugly?  Red peppers are where it’s at!  I was a little sorry that I had to pop those luscious gems into the oven.  They went from being smooth, perky 20-somethings to squishy, wrinkled middle-agers.  The solace I found in this analogy for aging is how damn sweet those roasted red peppers taste!

Now I better go for a run.