So, by the time you read this I’ll be in Iceland. Finally. And getting naked, as planned.
Turning forty has been something that–if you’ve been reading this blog a while– you’ll know that I’ve had as a giant landmark moment for a really long time. And now it’s here. I was forty last week, on the most perfect of sunny days, in the best company. And life feels just the same and yet very different.
Physically I’m still me. Feeling not too bad; in fact, I’m happier in my skin than I have been for a long time. And I have plans to get fitter. I have a trail marathon in my sights. Not to mention the two days of hiking in Iceland.
Emotionally, I feel as though there has been one final shift into a place of acceptance, peace and determination. As though I’ve finally given myself permission to do more of what I want, less of what I don’t and care less about what ‘other people’ think of me. Of what I look like, what I do, the choices I make, how I choose to parent and how I live my life. It’s been like I’ve been waiting, waiting, until the actual day. Now, there’s a huge feeling of ‘fuck it, I’m forty’ hanging around when it comes to decision making and risk taking. A feeling that life is short, that it should have every last drop of goodness used up before I clock out. You can tell the strength of feeling I have about this; I think this might be my first ever blogging swear!
And that feeling is good. So good. Perhaps realising, finally, that we don’t actually have all the time in the world is a really good way of gaining clarity and bravery about decision making. I feel like ‘fuck it, I’m forty’ might be a mantra for the whole year…lets see where it takes me! I might have to revisit this list and add more to it. On the flip side of this is my decision to stop planning so much. To let decisions and opportunities unfold before me, instead of forward planning to the last degree. I’m happier with risks, happier with spontaneity, happier with times of quiet–and of ridiculous busyness. So many opportunities have started to arrive that I never could have planned for; great things that I’ve been happy to say yes to, because I’m feeling this way.
I’ve been waiting for Iceland for what seems like forever. The fact that (barring some kind of disaster) I will actually be there by the time you read this means that, despite everything, I made it. Despite having to move in with my parents, having to sort out my finances, having to start my life all over again, I made it to Iceland. For me, this feels really significant. A sign that I can make things happen. That there is a lot of good stuff yet to come. With plenty of things in the pipeline for after Iceland (more on those later), and my returning levels of fitness, this feels like such a strong place to be, emotionally as well as physically.
Honestly, it feels like the sun has started to shine on me again and I’m excited about what my forties will bring.
But for now, I’m taking this week to live out my dream of walking across a volcano, swimming in a lagoon and standing on the summit of the world’s newest mountains… I’ll be back soon.
NB: I’m likely to be sharing photos over here, if you fancy seeing what I get up to.
Awesome Iceland photo from the lovely people at Unsplash.