Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Almost 40

I once thought by this age I would have it all down, that this would be the climax of my life. If 40 is all downhill, then 39 must be the peak, right? And sometimes, if I think hard enough, I do think I'm at my best ever. Except for my health, of course. And my ability to remember things. And my looks. And my...

I used to be seriously insecure. Probably it had a tiny bit to do with little ole Asian me growing up in Texas with a bunch of hicks who didn't even know what chopsticks were. But that's another story. The point is I've always been wanting to be more this or less that. When I was a kid, I wanted to be blonder and more blue-eyed. Later on, I wanted to be more athletic. Then I wanted to be better at coordinating my jewelry. Back then, there was a chance of me becoming more this and less that.

Not anymore. I realize now that if I haven't become more whatever in my 39 years of living, it's time to give it up. So I proudly claim the following.

I'm almost 40...and I will never be an athlete. I will always be the last one picked for any team. I predict that later on my doctor will discover I've had a mild disease that's affected my cardiovascular system and coordination my whole life.

I'm almost 40...and I will never wear makeup. During my makeup formative years, I just could not get the same effect with turquoise eye shadow and eyeliner as my hickish but very pretty classmates. So I gave up. Later on, I was too embarrassed to go through those learning years because it's fine for a 14 year old to look like a clown, but a 20 year old? Nowadays, even lipstick is too much for me because I hate the taste of it. As long as I can't see my purple lips out of these eyes, I'm good.

I'm almost 40...and I will never be fashionably dressed. First of all, current fashion sucks. Also, it is very difficult to put together any kind of coherent fashion wardrobe when people keep giving me their free unwanted clothes. Like one sister gave me leather pants and salsa dancing shoes, my dad gave me his sweatshirt which shrunk in the dryer, and my other sister gave me her surfer shirt (actually I lifted it from her closet). Really, it's a miracle that I don't look like a total freak. At a wedding, at least.

I'm almost 40...and I will never be neat. My parents were slobs, and my sisters were bigger slobs. Thank goodness I married a slob, otherwise we would've killed each other by now. I'd much rather be the slob that I am than a total neat freak who spends every free minute cleaning and yelling at her kids for being kids. And no, there is no middle ground. And no, I do not have guests who are not family or who do not live in a fraternity.

I'm almost 40...and I will never change my hairdo. One, because it is the secret to how I look the same as I did in high school. Two, because I tried the Halle Berry cut, and believe me, it only looks good on Halle Berry. And three, because my hairdressers-in-training who give free haircuts can't handle anything more complicated than a bob.

I'm almost 40...and I will never be artistic. Oh how I envy creative people. I can barely color coordinate my clothes; how can I color coordinate the walls with the window treatment with the rugs with the furniture? I can barely remember existing thoughts in my head; how can I come up with new ideas? Thank goodness that the rules of language and grammar let me express myself somewhat through words.

I'm almost 40...and I will always be cheap frugal. I don't know why that is. I grew up in the same poor household as my sisters, and they spend hordes of money on facials, Gucci sunglasses, Rolex watches, and video games. I figure it must be genetic. By some fluke, I inherited all my grandmother's genes for frugality, and since it all came down to me, skipping my mother and sisters, I have an extreme case of cheapskatitis. I'm not one of those cheapskates, though, the ones who'll blow a gazillion bucks on themselves but won't spend a dime on others. I'm cheap on myself but perfectly willing to buy presents, treat other people to dinner, and give money to charities. I've learned that generosity has nothing to do with frugality. While I might embrace my frugality, I will always try to be more generous.

I am almost 40...and I will never be a go-getter. I've never been a person who could multi-task very well or get a lot accomplished. Stuff gets done one at a time, very slowly. I prefer to do things right the first time, which is why I avoid starting anything at all. A few worthy goals get all my focus, and who knows what happens to everything else. I can't jump from one project to another either. I'm a person who needs her down time to think and meditate, to daydream, to sit at an airport and people watch.

I am almost 40...and it is time to be happy with who I am.


marian said...

you're almost 40...and i love you just the way you are! : )

Anonymous said...

Hey, you shouldn't call your sisters a slob! And i'm not a big spender either. In fact, i'm starting to think that i got some of your genes! But you have changed and i have witnessed it. You are waaaay nicer now than you were when we were kids so there's still hope!

Anonymous said...

wat you mean your sis is a bigger slob.You two are slobs not me. Who has a gucci sunglasses? It is Chanel you got to get your namebrands correct. Geez. I am generous to myself and all. That is the best kind

Fearless Mom said...

i have the craziest sisters (Anonymous 1 & Anonymous 2) ever.

PoLoverLorna said...

so i suppose you don't subscribe to obama's 'change' mantra?

Earth_Mommy said...

I just turned 38, guess that means I have a year to be happy with what I'm not, too. I envy the almost 40 you, to be able to be so comfortable with yourself.