Grey hair at the roots, a hint of crow feet, a body that has seen better shape, loose fitting clothes and a permanent resigned expression is something I often associated with the 40s women growing up. Judge me for it but back in the day women, even working ones, paid scarce attention to themselves. Many of them had kids of marrying age hence stepping into 40s was a sign of ‘old age’. Not surprisingly, men got away with a rather fancy term; midlife-crisis. Unfair! *Hmpf*
Truly, I’m glad to have born in the 80s. My generation has done everything from sleeping under the stars with our cousins during summer vacations to talking to them on video calls. We’ve cherished eating 50 paisa Pepsis and also the exotic flavours of ice-creams we get today. We’ve seen computers evolve and get smaller in size, floppy disks give way to DVDs and pen drives, the advent of internet, mobiles and then smart phones. Life kept teaching and like eager students we absorbed everything. However, we never took a moment to think about how life would be when we would be grown ups.
Standing on the threshold of my 30s, I prepare myself for stepping into 40s and feel strangely at peace. My life hasn’t been perfect, yes, but the fascinating part is that I don’t find myself fretting about it. Do I suddenly feel an adrenaline rush or an insatiable urge to follow my dreams? No. Can I make my time on this planet worthwhile by working on my case better? Maybe. Would I trade what I have for anything else? Never!
I wrote this post 4 years ago and am surprised at the positivity with which I was looking forward to welcome this day. There have been few hits and misses yet for most part God has been kind to me. Isn’t this the perfect occasion to leave some thoughts behind for the 50s me for posterity? Why not tell her just how awesome Varsh is? (Excuse the narcissism just this once, pretty please!)*Puppy eyes*
An ugly duckling, a late bloomer or a tubelight, use any label for me and you’ll probably be right. I’m the overweight teenager who preferred to be hidden transformed into a healthy and fit middle-aged lady who jogs on the road alone and makes heads turn. If Kajol can, why can’t I right? *wink wink* My wardrobe that was once ruled by black is now a riot of bright colours. I’ve changed and for good. Wish I could tell my younger self that self-acceptance is the first step towards self-confidence. *heart emoticons floating around*
I mentally categorise and filter people I meet. Apologies if this sounds rude. I’ve learnt this hard fact during the lockdown that mixing professional and personal life can be extremely tiring. I make and take only important phone calls and drop a message where it can suffice. Also while we’re at it, social media is an illusion and I try to use it to my advantage at best. Drawing the line at the right time is my beloved talent. *Influencer Varsh doing Tch Tch*
Interestingly, I’ve extended so many olive branches to so many people till now that one might contest that I have an olive tree in my backyard.*rolling eyes* My fault or theirs, I blinked and retracted first. Nah, not anymore. I’ve uprooted that imaginary tree and gobbled down all those yummy olives as toppings on my pizzas. Keep good balance on that high horse of yours, just in case.
I turned into a Potterhead in my 30s and can relish a Murakami, Yuval Noah Harari or Chitra Divakaruni Banerjee with the same dedicated fervour. My listening has improved over time and so have my relationships. I accept compliments gracefully now instead of silently wondering ‘whether I really deserve it’. Becoming a mom of two inspired me to be the best version of myself. Surprising, isn’t it? We age only when our heart ages, not a second before that. *Truth and only the truth*
Finally, stepping into 40s has taught me forgiveness and gratitude. What we can’t change or like, we must accept and move on. It’s simple really. Learning to forgive can be an exhilarating release of pent up emotions and I’m realising it to some extent. The ghosts of our past or the demons from our future shouldn’t influence our present. Be thankful, appreciative and don’t forget to say it out loud. *Best advice ever*
Parents’ love, husband’s encouragement, unconditional support from family and friends and most of all countless warm hugs and wet kisses of my two precious darlings make life seem like a beautiful ride. What did I do to deserve such entitlement to affection? Pray God showers them all with his choicest blessings and good luck!
I’ve run 7 marathons this year (5k, 10k) , feel the excitement of a teenager, read a lot and am doing quality work with the right brands and people. Life has just begun. Stepping into 40s is so much fun, wonder where the next decade would take me. Any guesses?
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