by MIM STACEY
I’m turning 40, and I think I’m OK.
In my day (yes, I was going to wait until I ACTUALLY turned 40 to use that expression, but it just slipped out!) kids were older when their mums turned 40.
I remember as a 14 year old, sitting sullenly in the back of our cream Mitsubishi Colt, while Mum was trying to close the garage doors in our little house in Salisbury, Brisbane. Completely out of character, she threw the old brick that used to anchor the doors shut, to the floor. My sister and I just looked at each other and shrugged. She got in the car and we mumbled in stereo “what’s wrong with you?”
“I’m turning 40 tomorrow, and I’m not happy about it”. Sis and I just shrugged again and without giving it a seconds’ thought, grunted something unintelligible, and turned back to our all-consuming Donkey Kong and Oil Panic games.
For so many years, this has been a suppressed memory. Forgotten in a haze of jelly pens, spiral perms, Russian wedding rings, Reeboks and other mid to late 80s fabulousness. Until now…
Next month, I will turn 40. A number that always seemed ancient, and so very, very distant . . . until now. I decided a few years ago that I wasn’t going to have a 40th birthday party, a decision after which my hubby threw me a surprise 39th! (I’m an attention-to-detail-kinda-gal, it’s hard to get one past me, but a party for my 39th birthday?? Clever, clever man.)
I presumed that as the big Four Oh loomed, I would want to go and scurry under a rock, or at least hide under a very fluffy doona and hibernate for as long as was humanly possible, until the need for alcohol and food (in that order) arose. But no! I am staring it in the face and embracing this number with every aching bone in my body.