Well, I made it. The big 4-0. Some would say this is a bad thing or a sad thing, not me. Why? Because I made it here. If I look back on what has happened in the 20+ years since I graduated High School, I can't even begin to count the number of friends we have lost. Those people who didn't make it here. So, no, this isn't sad. It is a blessing.
I think about my friend I lost in middle school Will. Will was amazing. I mean seriously, I know people talk about people who died like they are gods but this kid, he really did have it all. He was kind, I mean really kind. He was the kind of person buddy benches are made for. He would seek out people who were being left out or treated unfairly and make sure they were taken care of. That is just the kind of human he was. And gosh, he was funny. I mean like comedian funny. To think about what he would have been. I can't even. I think he was so special because his time was limited on this Earth. Maybe God just gave him an extra shot of awesomeness because he knew he wasn't staying. He was put here to teach us. I think about him a lot.
I think about the nights my first year in college when I literally stopped answering the phone because it was NEVER good news. Someone was gone too soon. Something tragic had happened. The people who I graduated with talk about the curse of the class of '96. It feels like a thing.
I think about our friend Haws. He drove me NUTS! But I grew to love him. He actually introduced the hubs and I, so I am forever indebted to him. At first, I liked him, then I couldn't stand him, then I loved him like a brother, then he was gone. I think about him a lot.
There are so many more, so many I could go on for days. Babies, kids, adults, etc. All of them tragic in their own way. All of them gone too soon.
But as morbid as all of that may seem, it is what makes me so thankful to have made it this far. Nobody knows when their time is going to run out so you just have to live. My family and friends will tell you, I love HARD. Probably too hard sometimes because I also get my feelings hurt very easily. Most of them wouldn't tell you that because I try to hide it. Sometimes successfully, sometimes not. But I love these people and I try to show them everyday how special they are to me. I love their kids and their families like they are my own. Maybe I try to hard but I don't believe so. Be kind. Love hard.
I won't even bore you with the "where I thought I would be at 40" because that shit is just dumb. I am where I am and I am SO proud of it. I graduated college, I held an amazing job for 14+ years until I decided to become a stay at home mom. I now have the pleasure to stay home and be the mom my boys need me to be right now. I never had the desire to stay home when they were little. They needed daycare, I needed work. But now they need me. The shear dance of shuffling them to and from sporting events and school is a talent all in itself :) I have an amazing family. I have a husband who supports us. I have the best group of friends a girl could ask for. Have they changed over the years, sure. That is life. But did I end up with the best group yet, sure did.
So with that, this is freaking forty. I am going to own the hell out of it. Is life all glitter and rainbows? Nope. Not even close. Does it suck sometimes? Yes, often. Do I suck sometimes? Yep. Do I disappoint myself and probably my kids/family/friends? Sure. But they all take me back. Do I forget stuff and kick myself for it? Absolutely! Do I wash my face every night like my momma told me I should? Ummm, shamefully never. But this is just life, embrace it.
So with that, like a New Years resolution, I plan to do this year better than the last (every year should be like that, right?) I plan to catch up on some things I have neglected (this blog--eeeeek) connect with some friends I haven't seen in a while, love on my peeps even harder, call my brother more often, take a nap when I want to, do more projects, maybe start washing my face, probably forget a few things here and there and likely fail at a few things too... But I am looking forward to wearing 40 like a badge of honor. Watch out 2018, this is my year!!!
Now, since I am usually NOT a sappy person and I don't want this post to be a downer, let's look at some old photos and point and laugh at this kid who grew up to be me! Enjoy!
So this is me. I was bald, I was chunky, I was a tomboy. But man, look at those curtains! Winning, Mom!
A few things to point out - those teeth, thank God for braces. The hair/bangs OMG, did I cut it myself? I know that crimp job was probably all me. It is simply amazing. The shirt, epic. The undershirt and what you can't see is the sweat that covered it in the original picture. Again, straight off the playground. I vividly remember my mom going "Why in creation would they take pictures after recess!?!?!" This is gold.
The hair in this one, my lort. So much hair, so much bangness, so much crimping. I will leave the Raybans and suspenders alone in this picture because they are money. BUT can we point out the sweet car in the background?!?! I am glad I have learned to look at the background a little better since this was taken.