If there are any other "Lord of the Rings" geeks out there, you will remember the scene at the end of the "Return of the King" film when Bilbo Baggins is getting on the boat to the Undying Lands, he smiles and says, "I think I'm quite ready for another adventure!"
That's how I feel about turning 40 years old today.
I feel excited about the potential that is ahead of me and of the lesson that I have learned in my 40 years that has helped me grow as a person. I feel like I am at the cusp of an epic journey and I am anxious to get on with it.
I've spent the first part of my life growing, learning, making mistakes, and paying for some of those mistakes. I've learned to forgive and let go of the past. I've been raising two beautiful boys and although they are getting at the ages where they may not always want me in their business, I know and they know that I will always be there for them.
But I also have to to be there for me. I spent much of my life worrying about how others see me, about whether I looked right, talked right, was thin enough, if I was supermom and the price I paid was forgetting who my true authentic self was. I find it quite refreshing where I am now, not caring too much what other think of me.
I care not if someone thinks me wearing a Beastie Boys shirt while shopping, or sees a flash of my pink polka dotted silly socks under my office casual at work and finds me ridiculous.
It doesn't bother me when stylists try to talk me into dying my hair to cover my gray because somehow society has placed a higher value on looking young while pouring chemicals on your head then just rocking what you have.
I am not the same person I was when I was a child, or as a teenager, or in the twenties. Hell, I am not the same person I was 5 years, or even 2 years ago. I know that I am a constant work in progress, an ever evolving being.
So instead of looking at 40 as the "beginning of then end" where my body falls apart and my life slows down, I choose to see it like Bilbo saw that boat...as an adventure.
And I'm quite ready for it!