In my recent quest to assess what it means to greet 40 with grace and gusto, in traditional "Kelly style," I've been asking anyone who's lived into this decade to share what's great about it.
Overwhelmingly, women have responded with (and I'm paraphrasing), "It's a thing of beauty to not give a fuck anymore."
One friend said, you've lived long enough to have experienced loss and to really hurt. You know what it means to sacrifice and to lose but you still have energy, gumption and hope to try again and to know what really matters while you're doing it.
You know who your friends are and you're exhausted by the thought of trying to impress another, so you enjoy the tribe you've assembled.
You've seen death and dying and different than your 20's, you know that you're not immortal, so you fill your time with the people and experiences that you care about.
And you start to adopt the mantra, I ain't got time for that.
I ain't got time for regret. So, if it's something that I want at the cellular level...I give it a shot...because like I always knew, what do I really have to lose?
I ain't got time to stew over whether or not someone is still wounded over my bad behavior. I can apologize and let it go, trusting for the first time that the only reaction I can control is mine.
I ain't got time for show. If you want to know me, come sit with me and talk. I don't care about your clothes, your car, your house, your job title or mine. But if you don't drink coffee, we may have to have a more intense chat...
I ain't got time for blame. In the end, it was probably both of our faults.
I ain't got time for your God versus my God or your political armchair debates. I used to care, but I just don't think I do anymore. Most of the real shit doesn't get done by the people we elect. It's the people in the classrooms and the after school programs and in the fields and the hospitals.
I ain't got time for fear. I've lived with it all of my life. Most of the time, it's worthless and just holds me back.
Hopefully, I get more time. Maybe 40 is the mid-way point. Maybe I'll get to see the next 40 years and have a whole new list? Maybe I won't. If I do or if I don't, I hope to remember and really to embrace what I've garnered to be true up to this point. Because for me, the goal is to not to grow jaded, bitter, apathetic or even resigned, but rather to tread deeper and deeper into acceptance and happiness chugging lots of cups of coffee and glasses of wine along the way.