This Is 39

This is 39

I am feeling my age. Age is a loaded word and concept, but in my case, what I mean is that I feel this year of 39 completely: this is not just another year in the life. When I was younger, the milestone birthdays seemed to be 13, 16, 18, and 21. I remember announcing what I believed to be the last of them at 25, a birthday I felt marked the beginning of when “everything counts” as well as my ability to finally rent a car on my own. But 39 has been a milestone too — maybe even more than 40 will be. I feel as if I am standing in a more significant threshold, leaving one place and entering another.

This is my 39…

At 39, you splurge on Justin Timberlake concert tickets because you love him in a way that almost feels inappropriate — even though you still remember his hair circa the ’90s — but then you find that his concert homage to Bel Biv Devoe’s “Poison” thrills you even more than “Suit and Tie.”

You do all your Christmas shopping on Amazon — not because you are all savvy and techy, but for the simple reasons that you cannot bear to deal with crowds and parking at the shopping malls and you don’t have time to shop on foot anyway. ( I  once spent New Year’s Eve in Times Square. I went to Woodstock in ’94. When did I become such a wimp and so “busy?”)

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People you love have cancer. Way too many people you love have cancer. It makes you angry. And scared.

Thus, you look at moles differently. You start staring in the bathroom mirror for long bouts of time, trying to figure out what is going on above your upper lip and what to do about your forehead and WTH that tiny bump on your temple is.

You dish with your college girlfriends about miracle devices that remove chin hairs and the most comfortable yoga pants for school pick up. Because, you know, that is hot.

Your husband remarks to you that Taylor Swift seems like “she’d be a really cool girl to have… as a daughter.”

You find yourself keeping the car running so you can finish hearing that Guns ‘n’ Roses song on the radio — on the easy listening station (the hell?) — because it reminds you of college. Hall and Oates take you straight to the backseat of your parents’ car on road trips to the beach when you were a child, and Paul Simon and Billy Joel sing the songs that you hold sacred, the songs that your parents used to play on a record player  at parties that went past your bedtime.

You cry at commercials and flipping You Tube videos. You don’t want to watch violent movies. You wonder how the teenagers at the mall have parents who let them dress that way. You realize with a start that although you believed you were Carrie when you watched Sex and the City on HBOyou now think of Carrie and her friends as “young,” and they totally wouldn’t hang out with you.

You hear through the grapevine about friends separating and divorcing, a stark contrast to your 20s and early 30s when there was another wedding every weekend. It feels surreal; divorce seems like such a grown-up thing to do, even more than mortgages and minivans and babies. It’s threatening, like a tornado that might randomly hit you or someone you love. Even though divorces are not random at all, they feel random — which is terrifying.

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You spend lunches with friends comparing local memory loss facilities and living wills for your parents in the same breath as preschools and tennis lessons for your kids.

Everyone you know is training for some kind of race — whether it’s a half marathon, a full marathon, or an Ironman (overachievers). Your friends wear CrossFit T-shirts and Zumba pants at the grocery store because they actually do those things. Fitness is the new mid-life crisis.

Still, you very possibly might drink a Diet Coke with your lunch of kale and quinoa salad. Details.

Speaking of beverages: hello, hangovers. Every drink after your first is now some huge risk and gamble on whether tomorrow will be absolutely miserable.

You squint more. You consider appliances a viable gift option. You don’t know any of the bands playing on New Year’s Rockin’ Eve — and you don’t want to — but you can totally beat your kids at Just Dance (and only Just Dance). It ticks them off in a very satisfying way, but you are pathetically sore the next day.

You find yourself wondering whatever happened to Winona Ryder and Natalie Merchant. You hope they are okay, because they feel like distant cousins you grew up with once upon a time. You have a soft spot for Ethan Hawke and John Cusack and you always will, like the boys next door growing up that you can’t forget. Jake Ryan will always be the hottest boy who ever lived, and no, you don’t want to see a picture of what he looks like now. Thanks.

Your parents are slowing down and retiring. Some of your friends are losing their parents. It feels like some kind of seismic shift to realize that our generation is now up to bat. We’re the ones leading our countries and churches and corporations and the world. It’s us. Donna Martin graduated and has four children now — and so do I. The same people I drank with in college are now in charge of universities and hedge funds and corporate giants and Homeland Freaking Security. Gulp.

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That blows my 39-year-old mind, because I feel like a teenager in middle age clothing. I still feel like someone else should be the grown up. Still, I do feel ready to take responsibility for life and my place in it. I am not afraid to speak up for what I believe. I accept that not everyone is going to like me, even if it still hurts. I know I am never going to be perfect, and I no longer even want to be. I feel like I know what I want from my life, regardless of the expectations of others; unfortunately, I also know that my own expectations for myself are the hardest to bear and the least forgiving. I’m still getting used to the idea that this blur around me is my life happening, but I am getting there.

So, I’m happy to wear ballet flats instead of stilettos, and I have finally decided that Spanx are not actually worth it — I don’t care who is going to be at the party. And I have realized that I am the only mother my kids are going to get, so I better treat myself well and let them know that as imperfect as I am, I’m still valuable . Someday, they will all be imperfect, valuable 39-year-olds too.

I cannot lie: 40 scares me a little bit. This is the big-time. But it scares me in a good way, the kind that feels all tingly and full of possibility. If this is 39, I think that there is a lot to be hopeful for in my 40s. As long as I can figure out that whole what’s-going-on-above-my-upper lip thing.

About the writer


Allison is a writer and a mother of four children. Her writing can be found at her own blog, Allison Slater Tate, on Facebook, and Twitter.

From Around the Web


Michelle Cowan 6 months ago

Try having your first, and last baby at 40…. I don’t feel I fit in anywhere, I have no-one to compare this with.
But it’s the most radical thing I’ve ever done and my heart explodes with love every day for our 2 yo gorgeous girl and I feel like my life has been reset to endless possibilities…. Age really is a number. People can be born old. I’m 43 in August….I’m aware of the number but so so glad I don’t feel it!

Stephanie Garcia 6 months ago

So spot on!

Nicole Paczesny 6 months ago

Just turned 34 and already mostly all true.

Louise Silver 6 months ago

All so true!!! All of sudden I woke up and really started to exercise everyday. I turned 39 in January and I’ve lost 15 pounds since then, and everyone around me is training for the upcoming marathon!!!
39 and loving it!! It’s contagious, be careful

Amy Lapinski-Bartels 6 months ago

I am 43 and these are so very true now as they were at 39! 40 was an incredible turning
Point! I embraced it and it was incredible!

Tiffany Ware 6 months ago

Hahahhahaha almost the whole thing is relatable!

Charity Almer 6 months ago

I’m 38 today and so much of this rings true!!

Tamra Lee Robbins 6 months ago

So true

Michelle Thomas 6 months ago

Turned 39 last month. So true.

Taara Datta Donley 6 months ago

I will sit on the sidelines with my Starbucks caramel macchiato and cheer you on! 😉

Becky Johnson 6 months ago

Ha, Im soon to turn 40, this is so true!

Cory Kamen Fanning 6 months ago

Love this!!

Jen Sowden 6 months ago

I’m 38’and I’ve said way too many of these things.

Kim Figiel Hegedus 6 months ago

Wow-this is CRAZY accurate to me. I am 38 and I just did my first 5k with my daughter last fall!!!! Taara Datta Donley-still, no desire for a marathon, maybe at 40, lol. Maybe it is contagious!

Samantha Shay Epstein 6 months ago

Just turned 40. It stinks.

Kristy Edwards 6 months ago

I’ll be 39 this year. I completely feel like the same 16 year old I can remember. My daughter is 16. It’s surreal. To many people I know have cancer. Both my parents are gone, my dad 6 years ago due to complications from diabetes…I hadn’t spoken to him since I was nineteen. I did send him a letter, once, letting him know I was married, doing good, and he had two grandchildren. He sent me a picture of his dog. My mom passed away 5 years ago due to complications from lung cancer. A minor infection turned into sepsis. She was a nurse, and I’m still not exactly sure she didn’t tell me everything, so I wouldn’t worry. To ease the burden of planning stuff she knew I didn’t want to do ( my brother MIA for years, but showed up right before she passed) she made her boyfriend power of attorney. After the funeral, he took EVERYTHING. What I wouldn’t give to have my mom back. They both were relatively young, and it makes you think…how much more time is there? I don’t want to waste any, but it seems I’m doing just that.

Suzanne TenBroek 6 months ago

Just turned 39 almost two weeks ago…except for the diet soda and kale salad this is pretty much right on the money.

Tena Vanlandingham Gibson 6 months ago

Trust me on this : turning 50 was the most liberating thing I have ever done. Suddenly, I did not care if someone liked me or not. I actually became secretly distainful of others my age, clinging to their youth and basing decisions on the coolness factor. “Oh, you don’t think I’m cool? Guess what? I think you are an idiot that needs to grow up and model for your children that being cool is not the be all end all of life”. Of course, I keep these snarky comments to myself, I wouldn’t want to be left out of the next really cool party they throw. LOL Don’t judge me, they live in my neighborhood, I don’t have to drink and drive, thus allowing me to model “responsible drinking” for the whole neighborhood as I weave my way home, from one side of the street to the other. LOL

Lyndsey Winters Carlton 6 months ago

I feel a lot of this at almost 36. I still don’t feel adult enough to be where I am yet, somehow, here I am. Oh, and yes, I’m training for my first half, lol

Jessica Geiger 6 months ago

Awesome!!!! I am heading to the big 4-0 this year!! I can so relate to this!!

Jodie Carter 6 months ago

Thank you! I turned 39 on Monday and this rings true (as I train for my first half marathon

Taara Datta Donley 6 months ago

Holy crap! You’re right! I’m 41 and it seems as if I’m surrounded by people training for a marathon or some other sweat-inducing activity! Dear Lord, is it contagious? Am I next?

Mela 7 months ago

I want to know what this magical device that removes chin hairs is all about. And I’ve got 5 months minus a few days until I’m 39, so I must be advanced.

Amy 8 months ago

I am 39 and will be 40 in July this year. I cannot believe how spot on this article was! I literally just last week left the car running so I could finish ‘November Rain’ by Guns-n-Roses. I watched ‘Heathers’ last week and wondered how Winona Ryder was doing. I watched ‘True Tori’ with Tori Spelling and thought about how we’re both married now with kiddos. That was just an example of the similarity I had with the article. Awesome start to my day reading that!

Daniela 8 months ago

I can relate to this…I did not get married until later in life (almost 40)… :)

Daniela 8 months ago

At 44, I’m not at all feeling my age…don’t let 40 scare you! My grandma lived until 104 -we have a very young mindset in our family. We are all aging -every single person on the planet -just hold on tight and enjoy the ride!

emily 8 months ago

I too am 39, but single with no kids. It’s tougher for us. 1) Can’t relate well to 90% of my married, breeder friends, so there’s that. and 2) on the other hand, 39 but still have the responsibilities and freedoms of your 20s makes it all kind of weird. Stuck between worlds, as it were?

Either way….oy.

Melanie 8 months ago

You read my mind… and made me smile and tear up at the same time. 39 in 2014… me too! Here’s to 40 in 2015- I’ll drink to that! Thanks for sharing!

giraffe neck 8 months ago

oh please, 39 is still young, very young, it is not 50 yet !!

Aurora 10 months ago

39 is in t-minus 3 minutes. Thank you for the fun read! So spot on, I glad im not alone and weird!!

Tracey 12 months ago

As a childfree person, I look young as young as I did when I was 25 and want to remain this way but thanks a lot for recognising that 39, although a lot wiser is still an incredibly young and happy, carefree age, apart from the cancer part, I know of people in their early thirtis to fifties dying of cancer, this is a shame

James 1 year ago

Excellent piece. Even from the UK and 39 tommorw I ‘got ‘ most of your references. Excellently written. Thanks for brightening my monotonous train journey! :)

sarcasmica 1 year ago

Found this via your newer “40” post. I am about to turn 38 and it’s all true now. How are we grown ups ?! Who said we were responsible enough to raise small people ?!!

Amy 1 year ago

This is me. How did you know. Only difference is that I just turned 36. You writing his home. It’s all truths. I love reading them.

mrsmurphy 1 year ago

Donna Martin graduates! Donna Martin graduates! LOL! Great piece, thanks for writing it. Myself, I am 43 now, and I can tell you, it only gets better!

Amy 1 year ago

Thank you for writing this. All of this hits home for me. I recently turned 40 and I’m only starting to think about focusing more on the journey. Life is, all of a sudden, too short.

Sonja 1 year ago

OMG! This is awesome! I was born in April 75 and this post hits the nail on the head! Happy 39th!!

julie 1 year ago

I love this, it is spot on. I am about to be 39 and I still feel young. I look at kids in their 20’s and they seem so young. Will I just wake up one day and be my age? What does that really mean? Thank you for writing this.

Dawn Wade 1 year ago

I just turned 39 on May 30th, 2014 and all of a sudden I could feel all 39 years at once. How can my mind be so young and my body screaming that peri menopause has been trying to reach me! (Stupid hot flashes) So here’s my take on it; since I will probably spend every moment trying to figure out how I got here so quickly, I think I will turn 39 again next year just to make sure I get it right. If not, I will be just like my mother (LORD) and forget my age anyway!

lesbomom 1 year ago

I am looking at 34 this summer and I am okay with that right now. But 39 seems daunting. Like – I should totally have myself together by 40 – and I just don’t know if I will….

amy 1 year ago

I just turned 40 and don’t know where the hell the last 20 years went. I seriously don’t know how I got to this age but I’m here, and while I am healthy and happy, I know I’m fragile so no more crash activities for me. As long as I’m here, I’m enjoying it as much as possible too! Although, I too do not feel 40, this was not what I remember my mother being like when she was 40 but it’s ok. Thanks for the laugh!

Shannon 1 year ago

I can agree with most of this except that the women and sex and the city have always been around that age and older even in their first season. It’s probably because they were 10 years older than me and their first season. I have never viewed them as being younger than me and they are still not younger than me now. No one on the planet thinks Jake Ryan is hot however I have never heard the end of Matt Dillon ironically enough, and also it would be a cold day in hell before I would ever drive a minivan. Loaded Dodge Durango Citadel,yes, minivan hell no! I will be 40 in October.

Rachel 1 year ago

I loved this and immediately shared it with my BFFs. I still can’t believe I’ll be 40 this year. I don’t feel anywhere near mature enough to be that age. I remember my mom turning 40! I still feel 20 (until I spend some time with 20 YOs and then I definitely feel almost 40). Thank you for the lovely piece, it really encapsulated so much of what I feel. Here’s hoping the next 40 are as fun as the first 40 years were!

Roberta Saielli Lewis 1 year ago

At 49, this makes me feel old because I was the one playing Billy Joel and Paul Simon on a record player. My parents played Buddy Holly, The Everly Brothers, and Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass.

Ali 1 year ago

Turning 40 in two weeks and it all rings true. I frequently look around and wonder where the grown ups are. And I think that this is the year that I REALLY need to review and organize everything in case something happens to me and my husband needs to know about the finances, what we have saved, what we owe, how freaking much it will cost us to be retired (and how we need to save even more despite paying for child care and trying to save for college), and so on. Sigh. Being an adult is fun, but not all the time.

Annika Miriam 1 year ago

What a fantastic piece of writing! I’m nowhere near 39 yet, but I surely am looking forward to it now! 😉

Nicole@RunningWhileMommy 1 year ago

Fantastic post! I am 42 now and I have to say, I am loving every minute of it. Life is only going to get better so buckle up!

Stephanie 1 year ago

I’m with Sandy. I had my first when I turned 39, and he turned a year when I was 40. 40 was unremarkable because I was busy chasing around a toddler. It had no stigma or emotional attachment for me at all. But now that I have two, and I had my younger child when I just turned 42, (and I’m 43 now), now I feel like the clock is ticking. I think it’s because now I have time to think about it. Before it was just go go go!

Jan Prewitt 1 year ago

I vaguely recall turning 39… lol

Kristi Hampton Gouker 1 year ago

Jennifer Bell…that’s me..40 in less than 2 weeks…aaaahhh!!!!

Nans 1 year ago

I am 39 with my first baby (4 month old now)-and only been married (1st marriage) for 3 years. My husband and i often talk about how wild it is that what we dreamed of having our whole lives happened “this late in life” but it is also the happiest we have ever been. Its such a weird state of mind to be in–remembering the concerts that you waited in front of tower records for hours to buy tickets for-.and now its like–“how much are the tickets and do they have seats still available-i dont want to have to stand all nite” and being aware that you are doing that -you want to kick yourself for being “old” and high-five yourself for still going to concerts haha.
its such an amazing journey and each phase is so essential to the ultimate autobiography. This article makes me want to start really start documenting our lives-its gonna be a great story to look back on.

Linda Weiss 1 year ago

wonderful insights and observations

Michele Shaw Abbruzzese 1 year ago

Just turned 40….this story rocks…

Mandy Engelbrecht 1 year ago

can so identify with this, just I am turning 39 for the 3rd time this year…

Linda Hollander 1 year ago

Oh yes, I’m 39 and this is completely true. Everyone is doing marathons. Including me (on Netflix). I started waxing my upper lip. My knees hurt sometimes. Weird things appear in my face. Twentysomething boys hug me without thinking because I am no longer a threat (and make me feel like one of those creepy cougar wives). My husband thinks Halle Berry is a hot young thing. And to my horror, Axl Rose and Mike Patton are no longer hot studs but sad old men. Yes, forty, I’m ready. I’ll be the teenager in the middle-aged body.

Debbie Dodds 1 year ago

I’m 38 this year I can relate to this a lot.

Sue 1 year ago

Just turned 50 and it’s been a struggle to accept as, in my head I’m probably 30 at a push lol but everything you’ve written rings true and some! post meno,separated (DH MLC put paid to that) but enjoying finding myself again and learning to slow down, enjoying the little things and spending time with my son before he hits moody teens, life is a journey, trying to learn to enjoy the ride with all it’s bumps along the way!

Miranda Schatten Silvious 1 year ago


Vicky Jones 1 year ago

Very well said. However my girlfriends and I are just now or have gone back to school for an A.A or B.A in asking our children for help in algebra or learning how to put together a research paper MLA format. 40 is fabulous!

Shawna Renee Hoffmann 1 year ago

Yes to everything, especially John Cusack!

Linlee Pontifex 1 year ago


Elizabeth Sechi 1 year ago

Oh yeah jake Ryan!!!

Ana Estévez 1 year ago

36 this year… scary/nice/teary article. ..

Carla 1 year ago

Put on the Crue and eat the ice cream! That’s exactly what I’m gonna do. 😀

Kara Cwiklinski Schwind 1 year ago

2nd time I’ve read this & I love it even more as my 39th bday inches closer & closer…

Amie Conner 1 year ago

Tomorrow is my 34th birthday & although I am not as close to 40 as the author, this article is perfectly me!

Omigodshoes 1 year ago

I love you. Why aren’t we best friends?

Christine Smith 1 year ago

Bahaha! Just Dance! My name is IROCK and the kids don’t have a chance.

Jennifer Merritt Manazer 1 year ago

All true.

Erin Brooks 1 year ago

“Fitness is the new mid-life crisis.” I love it 😀

Sandra Rivera 1 year ago

Loved this!! Especially the parts about feeling like a teenage indifference aged clothing and the bit about spanx. Soooo true!

gorillabuns 1 year ago

Man, the squinting is really starting to bother me. I look like I need a translator to read me the restaurant menu!

But with 40 +, comes not giving one shit what anyone thinks. You look at those girls in the tight jeans and shitty make up and realize, dude, this aging shit is going to hit you way harder than it has me. Because I don’t give a shit. I say what I want, I say what I think and BTW: I look pretty darn hot doing so!

With years of practice, I can still out drink and out curse any 20 year-old. I so have this going for me.

Happy Birthday!

Eli Hudson 1 year ago

I am also 39 this year and can relate completely. I still don’t feel like a grown up and I used to think 40 was old. I remember my dads 40 birthday party lol

Melissa Smith Atnip 1 year ago

Awesome post and very true!! Am just a few short weeks away from 41! Ugh!!

Chrystal Acker Remme 1 year ago

Totally relate…

Christina Hahn 1 year ago

About sums it up

Liz Cahill Stone 1 year ago

So true! I love it! Donna Martin graduates

Jenifer Deperro Veazey 1 year ago

Live this, and love it

Michelle George 1 year ago

Turned 40 in September.. I will say.. it was a turning point. However, I feel the best I have felt EVER in my life…

Shannon Plunk 1 year ago

Wow, I’m only 31 but feel like this accurately describes my life! <3

Julie Anna Cottone Hoey 1 year ago

Yep…this blur is my life. That was a good one.

Laurie Lucas-Rickert 1 year ago

I feel like I’ve read this before, but I can’t remember. I’m turning 40 next month!!

April LaBar 1 year ago

Wow. I just turned 39 a week ago, and 95% of that could have been written by me. I love finding blogs written by women who I can actually relate to. Thank you for opening up this new world to me, and making me feel less lonely…

Leah Cochenet Noel 1 year ago

Wish I was still 39. In denial since January.

Maribel Pina R 1 year ago

Im not 39…but I definitely see snd can relate to all that..weird and scary …but yet good to know im not only one

Bobbyjo Atchison 1 year ago

40 this September.

Ingrid Walerius 1 year ago

Amy Stone 1 year ago

Just turned 39 last week, and this. Is. Dead. On.

May Carpenter Emery 1 year ago


Amy Carlson Tebbs 1 year ago

This is so great!

Michelle Brown 1 year ago

Lisa Hanna

Karen Lamb Partin 1 year ago

40 next month… this hit the nail on the head!

Kathy Vazquez Kmiotek 1 year ago

Love this!!! I’ll be 39 in December and all of it is true.

Rose Costa Heilemann 1 year ago

I knew I wasn’t the only ’74 baby feeling this way!!! 39 and the days are ticking away to 4-0…

Keli Williams 1 year ago

Love! Yep- 100%

Sarah Zagurski Perry 1 year ago

Thank goodness I’m only turning 38 this year :) seriously though great post!

Medrith Loe 1 year ago

I turn 39 in September-and this. This is perfect!

Misti Cauble Hernandez 1 year ago

Thanks Julie Presley! I feel most of these especially the one where you look in the mirror and seeing the wrinkles slowly starting to appear.. What really gets me my Uncle was murdered at 39 and I thought he was so old and now I think he was so Young! In 4 months I will turn the big 39 and I’m going to try my best too enjoy it.

Andrea Nunnaley Davis 1 year ago

I was just talking to my parents about how I don’t consider them to be old and aging, because that is what my Grandparents were and that it’s not possible because I can’t possibly be almost 42 years of age. Mentally I’m still in my 20’s. Great post, now I need some chocolate!

Jennifer Clark Jones 1 year ago

I’ll be 34 in a couple months. Shit, I’m getting old…. :)

Amy Garcia 1 year ago

3 months from 39. This is dead on!!!

Erin Foley 1 year ago

42 feeling like 22 :) with 3 kid baggage

Leah Pallenik 1 year ago

This is SO 39! ♥ IT!

Dani Riley 1 year ago

Wow. Just wow. Almost there’ bug already some of this sounds familiar.

Michelle Hancock 1 year ago

Oh no! I already feel a lot of these and I’m in my 30s

Nell 1 year ago

I can relate to your article on so many levels, especially the Justin Timberlake concert part. I’m 40 and I went to his concert with a bunch of my same aged friends and our FAVORITE part of his concert was the BBD “Poison” part. I also feel like a teenager in a 40 year old grown up body and I both love and hate it at the same time. Some days I look in the mirror and wonder where the hell the last 15 years of my life went.

Amy 1 year ago

Wow – this is one of the most relatable things I’ve ever read (even though I’ve got six more months to 39) Thanks for writing it.

sammie 1 year ago

This is brilliant! Bravo. Seriously. You don’t have to be 39, or even a parent, to appreciate this post. It is meaningful, and poignant, and true for just about everyone I know. I’m 29, with two young kids, and some of these hit me right in the gut. Others, like the cross fit reference, made me crack up. So true!

Love 1 year ago

OMG get out of my head! This is so true, and I still have a year or two to go!

Julie 1 year ago

You are so right- Jake Ryan IS the hottest boy who ever lived!

caroline 1 year ago

Staring at 39 in the face now, gotta say this rings true for me.

Ashlie 1 year ago

this whole thing completely speaks to me … funny part is i’m not 39 … or 35 or even 29 yet ! but i find all these things happening on more than one occassion. now THAT is scary … but still a very good read :)

Designer Purses and Bags 1 year ago

As I am about to turn 50 I can say that it really gets better the older you are!

Waiting for 40 1 year ago

Wow as an almost 39 year old with a 12 and 10 yr old – you are spot on!! Except today I decided to put those heals on – not because I can but because I need to break these shoes in for a dinner party next week and apart from the dreaded possibility of a hangover the next day – I definately don’t want sore feet because I have far too much running around to do.

Dawn 1 year ago

As a 39 year old +4 yr old I am in awe at the accuracy with which you are describing what goes on in my mind in the middle of the night – which is the only time I have time to try and figure out wth is going on with my upper lip lol….

Jessie Braun 2 years ago

I loved this – so well said on so many topics. Especially the divorce thing. Wow you nailed it. It is surreal and seemingly random….even though you know it’s not random. This makes it less scary to me in the sense that I have some control, but terrified in the sense that no one is really immune to the possibility. Like, no one. And yes, 40 excites me, this is true….but I would love to figure out a way to smile that doesn’t make me look like The Grinch in photos???? Great post.

Laura 2 years ago

This is dead on girl! As a 39 +2 year old, I feel the same way:)))) oh and I watched Reality Bites the other night…. Poor Winona, where is she now!?

Julied 2 years ago

Spot on is right. I’m 49 and feel the exact same way. Except Billy Joel was on my radio, not my parents’!

MommyLisa 2 years ago

AMAZINGLY SPOT ON – even for my 46 year old face with cheaters reading this. Except, y’all can keep Ethan Hawke and I will take Ben Stiller EVERY time.

JFoster 2 years ago

I’m less than 4 months from my 40th, and just had my 3rd AND 4th child(ren), so this was perfect timing for me…found this refreshing in an “I’m so glad I’m not alone” way, and insanely frightening in an “Oh my gosh I hadn’t thought of all of these, but they’re all true” way. Thanks for putting it all out there. Great writing!

Carmen 2 years ago

I’m 29 but relate to this in a major way… Great read.

Stephanie 2 years ago

Reading this makes me feel a little better. And a little sad. My birthday this year is 45 (yikes! yay! a little of both?) and I think and agree with many of the things you’ve written, including still feeling way younger than I am. Time really does fly!

Jackee 2 years ago

Wow! So true! Just turned 39 on new years day! Even though there billions of people in the world, it still seems weird so many can relate to this!

D’Anya 2 years ago

Such a great read! This 39 year old mom can totally relate.

Rose Marinello 2 years ago

Beautifully written, straight from the heart. God Bless You, you will be a-okay…

Jeanette Moody Brewer 2 years ago

Me too! I'll be 38 in September. I feel like I could have written this myself!

Scott McBurney 2 years ago

I'm 39 with 11 years experience!

Roni Noone 2 years ago

I'm close enough to 39 to realize this post is spot on.

Jen Zolak 2 years ago

This is so true. I caught Sex and The City this summer, and they were celebrating Carrie's milestone of 35!! They used to be so much older than me- what happened!?

Lorraine Lehman-Braithwaite 2 years ago

I've been turning 39 for a few years now!

Carolyn Rios 2 years ago

I could just change some of the details. 69 has been one of the most life changing. A year of gradual transitioning into junior SENIOR status, a gentle slowing down that is happening, A mild acceptance of what that means. Great new freedoms being done with it all. Fears at what things could be. Good luck, and enjoy everystage, they are all good.

Primavera Rios 2 years ago

This was great! So nice to hear a woman be both strong and vulnerable. I just turned 38 and have decided that this is the year i let go of the past and live in the present!!

Dawn Oliver 2 years ago

Oh hell this past year I celebrated my 28th anniversary of my 25th birthday! You can do it!

Write-Minded Woman 2 years ago

Someone shared this and I read it and after I got through laughing all I could think of was I want to read your take on life when you hit 49! :)

Adrienne Williams 2 years ago

This is exactly why at 69 I profess to be 39 … Some thing just get a lot scarier

Allison Slater Tate 2 years ago

Robyn, you inspire me! You do have this, and we can do anything — that is something I very much believe!

Karen 2 years ago

I am a 39 year old wife and mother of 2…I had a “I’m not old enough for this stuff” moment this morning. What you said is amazingly accurate, I thought I was the only one who felt like a teenager in adult clothes.

Jennifer Rae Donnelly Penner 2 years ago

I am a 39 yr old, educated mom of 4. I was surprised to see how many of your comments exactly applied to my life right now…..

Rita Middleton Baugh Nunley 2 years ago

I had my third child at 39! She came all by herself, 5 1/2 years after my other 2 fertility babies in my early 30s. Wait until you hit 50. Although mine have been traumatic: double mastectomy, lost my little brother to cancer this summer, my 20 and 23 year oldsI'm

Rita Middleton Baugh Nunley 2 years ago

Great attitude! Keep slugging!

Wendy 2 years ago

I’ve got a couple of years on ya, but you are so right! “Fitness is the new mid-life crisis.” Loved your whole post!

Michelle Gavaletz Hlavna 2 years ago

My uncle refers to ages as the XX anniversary of my 21st birthday! LOL! You are only as old as you feel. This hits home, as I am 39 turning thirty-ten in 4 months!!

John Hellert 2 years ago

At 40 you find out that you have more in common with any random 60 year old than you do a 20 year old relative.

linsey rosland 2 years ago

loved this!!!!….I’m right there with you barely hanging on to 39 looking ahead with hope! I’m praying 40 brings me back to my twenties (mentally of course in only some ways) where we laughed more, loved more, and really enjoyed the moments that mattered without worry. I’m a mom of three working and playing hard..ready with you, to hang up the spanx and accept my “curves”, love my family and friends and mostly… love ME for being ME. Happy 40th year….Make it the best yet!! :)

Julie Falletti 2 years ago

Gosh I loved this article-I think I wrote it. LMAO I just turned 59-talk about scary. My last year to say 50something. I don't feel 59 . But I am. So yes let's try to stay healthy for my kids and now grandkids. I wanna be around Thanks for writing this.

Mixorr 2 years ago

39 was much harder than turning 40. You realize it’s your last year of your thirties. When you turn 40, or spend some time in your 40s you realize how stupid that all is. 40s are awesome: your kids are a little older and you can enjoy them instead of slave over them BC they are so young. There are so many reasons 40s are great. My only complaint is that my acne free teen years are finally having it’s revenge on my skin, peri menopause is a bitch

Pinky Knopik Charon 2 years ago

Forty is freedom !

Gail Wikane 2 years ago

It's not my own age that makes me feel old – it was when our oldest turned 30 THAT is what hurt. My husband & I still feel like we are in our 30s

Theresa Koepfler Reimbold 2 years ago

Wow….so dead on!

Robyn Gartenlaub 2 years ago

As I turn 39 this yr I yoo am embracing life. I have battled and beat cervical cancer, lost the ability to have children and never Bern married I have decided that this is the yr life begins not ends. I will foster to adopt!! Fall in love and take whatever life will throw my way with a "I've got this" instead of its got me beat…….i was inspired by your article! We are WOMEN and together we can do anything.

Aj Ruth 2 years ago

Donna Martin reference…Love!

Aj Ruth 2 years ago

This is perfect, I turn 39 in March. You perfectly communicated EXACTLY what 39 feels and thinks.

Leslie Harrell Wynn 2 years ago

I totally agree with what you have said. We are becoming our parents. Never thought that would happen. I am 43 and so far the last 3 years have been the best. If only I could have known then what I know now. When I turned 40 I said im going to live life to the fullest I'm going to step outside the box and do the things that I never would have done before. Life is short live it to the fullest.

Stephanie Snyder Matherly 2 years ago

I am also turning 40 this year…along with my oldest and dearest friends. We decided to embrace this new chapter and go to Vegas for a celebration! I enjoyed my 20's and 30's but look forward to the next couple of decades to come. Wrinkles and all! PS. I still think Jake Ryan is hot!

Amc 2 years ago

You’re my new hero 😉

Shelley Corrette 2 years ago

I found out long ago that you really don’t learn anything until you turn 40!!! And with the ever-changing job market, it’s ok not to know what you want to be when you “grow up” and to also go back to college for a new career path!!! I should know, I’m 55 and going back to college!!! Have fun with your family, that’s all that really counts!

Robin Yantz O’Brien 2 years ago

Wait until 49!!!!

Tatiana Siburo Boxa 2 years ago

So true!

Melisa Dalton 2 years ago

Ballet flats always gave me blisters. I’d take stilettos any day over flats. The difference with age however is that, every time I put them on to go out, I can hear Olympia Dukakis’ Steel Magnolia’s character, Clairee, saying, “It looks like two pigs wrestling under a blanket” with each step. Might be true but I don’t have blisters!

Kathy Hafner McCay 2 years ago

39, 49! no diff!

Barb milligan 2 years ago

Love how how you wrote it. Hit home…I turn 40 in 3 days. It scares me a bit but reading this has helped me see I am not alone and it’ll be ok. Thanks for making me smile about the big “40”. :)

Kim 2 years ago

Agreed. 39 is WAY worse than 40. I think something happens with the hormones, who knows, who cares. It’s over:) Hang in, it’ll get better. Next year every scary thought will be become like a nice blue cloud floating by in your mind.

Aurele Van Reck 2 years ago

lovely. Just lovely. You will find that word works well in your 40's :)

Barbara DeMelo Clark 2 years ago

Wow…this hit way too close to home!!!

Robin Edds Shampton 2 years ago

It's not so bad now that I'm 39 and he's 32…but once upon a time he was 17 and I was 24. 😀 And I'm a semi-retired/recovering groupie so him being on tour has been rough on me.

Denise Greber 2 years ago

60's are pretty awesome too…you get to experience the wonderful world of innocence again through your grandchildren!

Susan 2 years ago

41 now. 38- had a child+ started a business w/ hubby. Talk about life change. Past three yrs flew by. I am in charge of my own destiny and love it! Always keep goals and dream big!

Jeni Grau McArtor 2 years ago

I've loved my 40s. 50 is just a few months away and I hope is even better!

Deb Haas 2 years ago

40s are awesome….I'm at 47 now and 48 isn't too far away. It's all good as long as you feel good about it. Show your kids you can still dance and play and have a blast with them, and your friends and family that you love them. Every year is a good year.

Sara Foxman Conway 2 years ago

Wonderfully written as usual Allison. Sometimes it feels like time is passing to quickly and also not fast enough depending on the moment in time. I know I am not quite 39 but I understand where you are coming from and I appreciate you expressing it for us all to relate and celebrate and/or commiserate together!

Susan Vernor Smith 2 years ago

Time flys when you are having fun, so enjoy every minute! Sign in our kitchen, "Every day is a gift!" Happy NewYear!

Dixie Dawn Henderson Gadapee 2 years ago

My Daddy used to add letters to his age. He was always 49. He passed at 49W. LOL

Michelle Dragoo 2 years ago

Wow, did you write this for me? LOL, I turned 40 last year.

Tara Jones Salley 2 years ago

You are spot on! If you feel like that at 39, you will love your 40's!

Allison Slater Tate 2 years ago

I did say at the beginning that this is MY 39. I wrote it in "you" because, frankly, when I wrote it in first person it sounded weird to me. So it was more like, "If you were me, this would be your 39." I certainly don't expect everyone to relate to it, to like JT, or to drink diet coke. But you know, just because you don't relate to my experience, that doesn't mean I think your 39 is stupid. 😉 And yes, I have chin hair. And I am not alone!!

Teddy Started It! 2 years ago

Don't sweat it. This is my month to turn 50. I still haven't figure out WTH is going on above my upper lip, but I can say that I do feel more beautiful and competent than ever. When I figure out the lip thing, I'll let you know. Happy birthday!

surgeoninheels 2 years ago

6mos shy of my 40th bday. So many of these thoughts are spot on.

Cheryl 2 years ago

As someone who has been 39 for several years, I can say with authority that you nailed it. Love it, sharing…

Just Me Dawn 2 years ago

"You squint more. You consider appliances a viable gift option. You don’t know any of the bands playing on New Year’s Rockin’ Eve — and you don’t want to…"
I gave in this year and got bi-focals; got a stove this year and told my husband it was my birthday/Mother's day gift and was watching the Ball Drop Show at work,when I said to a much younger co-worker, "Madonna was unique, Milley is just sick and wrong". He said I was just old and I agreed (I'm 45). I miss her pointy bra controversy :) Happy New Year!

Quinn Morgendorffer 2 years ago

errrrr, what's inapproriate about a 39 year old loving justin timberlake, other than it being stupid to worship any celebrity that is.

Donna Martin 2 years ago

Ditto word for word! Thanks for a wonderful post….from this 39+3.75 year old…who still thinks that I feel like 28. That was a good age…right? right? 😉

Nicole 2 years ago

Wow just turned 39 last week and feel every word you say. When did I officially become the one in charge of everything. Thanks for sharing and reminding me of what is truly important.

JoAnna 2 years ago

You took the words right out of my mind. I feel comforted that I am not the only one who feels this way. Thank you so much. Six months to go till I hit that big 40.

Tara 2 years ago

Great post! So very true! Here is the link to the post I wrote when I turned 39, 2 years ago… the scary part is now that I am 41 and on the “other side of that hill”, I seem to be picking up speed!

Laura Jones 2 years ago

Ah, yes, I saw that. I guess it's about ones "type". :) Thank you. :)

Danielle Adams 2 years ago

This is so true. I am turning 38 next month and feel the same way. Sadly someone I love got cancer that person is me. Breast cancer at 37 and now in remission that is scary. How did that even happen?

Mitzi of SC 2 years ago

Yeah I’m curious also?!? Lol!! Do share!!

Mitzi of SC 2 years ago

Great choice of words!! I totally agree!! Even tho I just hit 30, this piece has brought some clearity to my cloudy thoughts, and I can relate to every word! Thanks so much for this read, and letting me know that I am not the only woman with thoughts like this! I will share this as often as I can and when in doubt I will fall back to this piece to help clear my much cloudy mind!! Xoxoxo to you!

Stacy 2 years ago

I turned 39 a month ago and after reading this I can relate to most of this. I don’t feel my age at all and wish I could change many things…

Alix Campbell 2 years ago

I find that I’ve stopped on XM radio’s “The Blend” far too often these days. And sometimes I listen to 90s on 9 when no one else is in the car and pretend I’m 22 again…until I look in the rearview mirror and see all the booster seats and juice boxes.

Also, sigh, John Cusack – Lloyd Dobler 4eva!

Paula Chappell 2 years ago

Rose, totally agree with you! I just turned 60 also and although I hate the number, I am young mentally and physically.

Mindy in Indiana 2 years ago

My sentiments exactly. And I feel this HUGE pressure to keep up with the Jones’ regarding electronics. All of my kids are little whizzes with this stuff. WTH? I remember when VCR’s entered the world and all I had to figure out was setting the time or pressing record!

Michelle Kreder Crooks 2 years ago

Try renting the movie Sixteen Candles. Jake Ryan was the heart throb in that classic.

Laura Jones 2 years ago

I don't know who Jake Ryan is. I was more into "Slater" a.k.a. Mario Lopez. I am 40 though… and I LOVE it!

Kristen 2 years ago

Wait, what!? I have eight days left at 39 and no one has told me anything about these miracle chin hair removal devices! Clearly I need new friends!! You captured this age so accurately–fun to read!

Rebecca Shafer-hill 2 years ago

39 is the last year officially counted. You will always be 39. No matter your age in the future, you are 39 when asked. BTW, anyone who asks your age should be slapped! They were not raised right!

Stacy 2 years ago

I am also 39. And this is perfect.

Desperately Seeking Erin 2 years ago

My 30s make me sing Britney Spears “I’m Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman” in my head. Except it’s more like, “I’m not a sports car, not yet a jazzy scooter.”

Linda King 2 years ago

I told my daughters when they turned 30 to enjoy this year because physically, this is the best you’ll ever be. They said you mean it’s all down hill from here on? I said, physically only. To me 50 was the earth shattering, eye opening year. When you realize that even though you still feel like a teenager inside, your life is more than half over. That everything you thought you would accomplish and where you thought you’d be in life – isn’t gonna be. Whether it’s because your husband died at 49 or you just took a turn you didn’t expect. You got to tell yourself it’s a plot twist and re-access and adjust. As humbling as 50 is, there is still much happiness to come if you evolve and change with all the plot twists in your life.

Robin Edds Shampton 2 years ago

If I had written it, there would be no "almost" before "feels inappropriate." LOL!

Tracy Deal Ross 2 years ago

I thought you were writing under a fake name when I read that part!!! :)

Christi McGregor-McMillen 2 years ago

I am 39 and I swear, I think about everyone one of those…except the "over the lip" thing… I don't have that. But I do a skin tag. WTH?

Holly 2 years ago

I’m 40, but the feelings you have didn’t hit me until a few months after I turned 40. Then when I saw it, I had an “a-ha” moment, now I understand why some of my 40 year old friends are acting the way they are. We are like teenagers again, trying to figure out what we want to be when we grow up. I know I certainly am and add in that I’m attempting yet another career change now that both my kids are of the age to be more independent.

Fitness midlife crisis = totally!

The note about divorce is so true… I’m scared to death that I might catch the “divorce bug” even though I know it’s not a sickness you can catch. Actively working on my marriage immune system right now.

And I get the sentiment about not caring about high heel shoes, spanx, and what others think, as I was that person in my mid to late 30’s (so freeing)…then my husband started noticing and comparing me to other (younger) women whom I cannot compete with and that’s all out the window…unfortunately. Unless it’s all just in my head, which it might actually be. Which brings me back to the fitness mid-life crisis!

Mollie Edwards McIntosh 2 years ago

Thanks for sharing!

Robin Edds Shampton 2 years ago

"At 39, you splurge on Justin Timberlake concert tickets because you love him in a way that almost feels inappropriate — even though you still remember his hair circa the ’90s — but then you find that his concert homage to Bel Biv Devoe’s “Poison” thrills you even more than “Suit and Tie.” Ummm…have you been reading my journal? You and I should be friends. 😀

Japolina 2 years ago

Wow! I could have written this but at 46 add to it worrying about kids driving and getting into college. Thanks for writing it!

Ann Liotta Aquillo 2 years ago

Funny and poignant. Thanks for saying what's on all of our minds.

Stacy 2 years ago

Well said! I am right there with you, only I turned 37 last June and felt like I was in a mid-life crisis the entire summer. I agree about it feeling pretty good, though a little scary. I loved my 30’s so I’m kind of excited to see what the 40’s brings to my life!

Danielle DiStefano 2 years ago

Ok.. after reading that I'm totally depressed.

Tanya 2 years ago

How did you get in my mind and read my thoughts, you crafty wizard? Although I’m 4 years your senior, I also have 4 children and I have thought these same sentiments almost to the letter. 40’s are great. I’ve noticed that I have really quit caring what others think 😉

Donita Meador 2 years ago

I continue to experience this at 30-16. The nostalgia comes in waves

Alice Beckett-Rumberger 2 years ago

Embrace 39……..I was a single, working mommy of 5 children…who behaved like 5 children ages 12 to 3 do. Divorce, single parenthood was not in the plan…I had written the story so differently but life happens and predictable becomes unpredictable but being true to myself never changed. I started to listen to myself better and trust myself more. So forward almost 10 years later…..a new marriage, 2 more children, many more growing struggles and success has taught me enjoy the jourmey…pluck the hair, move out of your comfort zone….the yoga pants (every once in a while!) Now approaching 49….4 kids who graduated high school, one through college, one entering kindergarten. Yup, livin' the dream, embracing motherhood in all the phases, starting a business, and still looking a moisturizers that are antiwrinkle and antipimple! I could write a book….maybe next decade when the house cleans itself, when the kids aren't going through transitional years, and ……..

Susan Corrar Edwards 2 years ago

I felt this way about 37, and if I had the chance to go back to any age…that is the age I would choose!!
If 40 scares you, wait until you are 60!! I like to say I am 29 with 31 years of experience!

Nic 2 years ago

I am 56. I was the high school principal for the Classes of 93-97 and I follow a bunch of them FB. Your points are right on the mark. But I feel that the world be OK.

donofalltrades 2 years ago

Allison, I don’t know you, but I instantly love you!

This right here –>”Your friends wear CrossFit T-shirts and Zumba pants at the grocery store because they actually do those things. Fitness is the new mid-life crisis.” Hilarious!

I turned 40 last year and was surprised at how poorly I handled it. I don’t know why, but it hit me like a ton of bricks the day of my birthday. I was fine up until then and had never given two shits about any birthday before.

When I got home from work there were balloons on the mailbox and my parents were at the house. My wife and my three kids all gave me great big hugs and kisses and I remember thinking I’m right where I want to be and couldn’t be more pleased with my life. Well, I could use more money, but that’s always doable somehow, right?

Dagmar Ebaugh 2 years ago

Can I just tell you that 46 feels the same (I have two young kids). But YES to the GnR song, and YES to really disliking crowds, etc etc. Enjoy 39!!

Heather Fraunberger 2 years ago

Haha! Love it. This is so true. I’m 43, and relate to every word. Besides waaaay too many people having cancer (I knew seven in my everyday life about two years ago), I’m enjoying my 40’s. I became a Yoga instructor. One of the best things I’ve ever done, my fitness mid life crisis served me well.

Rose Dietz Dunkerley 2 years ago

This was good…most of it still holds true when you are 49, and 59,…I turned 60 this year and I still feel like a teenager in someone else's older body!! Embrace each year…they are precious and they pass very quickly…so quickly that you look in the mirror and wonder who is the older person you see. Embrace aging…it is all part of life…preparation for the next better one!! Good thoughts!!

Amy McElroy Long 2 years ago

I just laughed because we have the same life…..:). Except I turned 40 last Feb and 41 is approaching fast. I fretted the entire year that I was 39, but once I actually turned 40, it was a huge relief. (BTW, I chose not to do the 'I am turning 40' party that all of my friends were doing, because everything seemed inadequate. What I really wanted to do was curl up at home with a good novel and pretend that it wasn't my birthday. My sweet husband let me do just that. (However, my sassy 4 children spent the day asking me if I was 40 or 45). But I LOVE being 40. I am financially secure, my children are all finally over age three, (barely), and I finally have stopped trying to impress all of the wrong people. I am still hanging on too my youth for all I can, but I wouldn't go back to my 20's. I love the generation that I am in, and I cherish that we grew up in a time without all of the technology that the younger generation has today, ( although I am enjoying it now). But we were all in the 80's and 90's together, and good or bad, we have memories. I will tell you that I was humbled at a SEC college game a few weeks ago in Atlanta while standing in line at the ladies room, a recent college grad insisted that I take on of her "mini's", to enjoy during the game since they would not be selling alcohol at the game. I am such a rule follower, that I was instantly nervous that I would be busted for having this tiny bottle of bourbon on me and could just imagine the look on my husband's face when the security guards were dragging me out for having it, but I decided to live on the edge a little… ;). Anyway, all was good until her friend, (who by the way had more wrinkles than me said, "awwww,,,,,you are so cute, you remind me of my mom"! Well, I was instantly insulted because my oldest child is ten. But, anyway, age is just a number, and while my babysitter teases me all of the time that I am old, I feel like I have the best of both worlds at 40. Old enough to have what I want, but young enough to enjoy it. Happy 39th!

kara 2 years ago

This is great! I’m 39..and can totally relate to all of what you said. Well written!

Alexis Hudson 2 years ago

I can totally relate to this. I turn 39 in 60 days. Add in the rollercoaster life as a pastor’s wife,mother of: a hearing disabled teenager who has actually survived looking straight at me and turning OFF his hearing aids when he didn’t want to listen, perky over achieving cheerleader (never would have admitted my daughter would be one of those), and a smarter than is good for him brainiac- who I can totally see inventing the coast to coast instantaneous transporter. God bless you this year. Happy healthy and productive 2014!

Bonnie Hahn 2 years ago

Just curious…Did you ever get that thing on the upper lip taken care of…lol :)

Karen Stone 2 years ago

Different musicians, different stars but essentially the same. Just wait until you are 69, kiddo (showing my age), it won't be cancer, it will be those who are dying of it, younger and older. But this was a very funny post because I can remember…. But even at 69, you won't feel much different than you do now, the Lord willing, it is just when you go to do something, your body won't let you. Get in shape now, while you still can. Loved this post.

Heidi 2 years ago

Spot on! Especially the fitness mid-life crisis. I just turned 40 and took up running!

craig bartlett 2 years ago

ballet flats are just as bad even more than stilettos.

Jaimie 2 years ago

Ok so I’m technically 38, have another month :•)

Jaimie 2 years ago

I think I am your 39 year old twin!! Where have you been!? :•D Awesome share!!

Melinda Hall 2 years ago

39 was nothing – no need to be brave…

Mytwicebakedpotato 2 years ago

Oh to be 39 again! I 46 almost 47 and feeling too close to 50. Thank god my son keeps me on my toes :)

Julia 2 years ago

WOW!!! Add 2 years and minus the kids and you have ME!!! How in the world did I become 41 and still feel 25?!?!?!?!?! Thank you for saying everything I feel! Best Wishes on #39!! 40 was GREAT to me and 41 is going to even be better! <3

Allison Slater Tate 2 years ago

Maya, I LOVE WILL SMITH!! Fresh Prince forever. xoxo

Just ate some chocolate. Thanks for the push. LOL.

Shannon Stilwell 2 years ago

Amaziing… were you in my head? I turned 40 a few months ago.

Nina 2 years ago

Yes! Just turned 37 but all apply to me. I laughed out loud at the Natalie Merchant and Winona Ryder comment. Really, where are they? This was so spot-on, Allison.

Kim 2 years ago

Best comment ever. Thank you.

Maya Harris 2 years ago

I have a countdown to 40 on my phone now. I love being 39! I can relate to almost everything you were saying (substitute Winona Ryder for Lisa Bonet and John Cusack for Will Smith lol). I am still amazed that high school was over 20 years ago. But 40 is fab! So eat some chocolate, throw on your tiara, throw away your spanx, and enjoy this year!

Zhenya 2 years ago

Yeah, what’s the deal with Guns-n-Roses and Metallica being played on the oldies stations?

Michelle 2 years ago

Don’t worry. 40 is awesome. It just gets better!

Heather Beachum Matuse 2 years ago

I feel exactly like this as I begin my last year in my thirties today!!

Robin Jenkins 2 years ago

Thank you! when I turn sixty-twelve, I want to be just like you!

Keia 2 years ago

Sigh…that’s definitely 39. Seven months to 40.

Nicely penned.

Keia 2 years ago


Julie Toon Jackson 2 years ago

I just turned 38…& it seems like you wrote what I've been thinking! Thank-you!

Deva 2 years ago

This is spot on!

Sandy 2 years ago

I had my first child at 39 … just. She was six weeks old when I turned 40. It’s hard to feel really old when you’re holding your first born, plus no one makes nasty jokes about your age.

Cynthia Drew 2 years ago

The only birthday i had a problem with was my 50th. Don't know why because some amazing things have happened since then.

Shannon Tarte Stermer 2 years ago

So this is what it will be like in 30 days? Bring it on!

Anna Hitchcock 2 years ago

Just turned 39 today. Thanks!

Aimee 2 years ago

Wow, 39 here, too. It’s all true. Thank you for sharing that you still feel like a teenager on the inside, wondering when you will feel like a grown-up. I have been aware and concerned about this for some time now; I’m glad to know it’s not just me. I wonder if those Homeland Security guys and college presidents feel the same way, too;)

A 39-yo friend just got diagnosed with breast cancer a couple of weeks ago; I keep imagining what it must be like to wake up each morning to face that reality. It reminds me to pray for her.

Ha ha to Ethan Hawke and John Cusak- I totally relate! And, the blur around that is your life- how do I slow it down long enough to enjoy each child while I still have them around me (I have 5, ages 2 to 10).

Thanks for helping me feel normal for today, not alone here at 39. I heard a quote from a singer about the mistake we make when we think the guy on stage in front of thousands of people has more influence or insight than the mom spreading peanut butter and jelly on bread for her toddler. We have worth and value, too:)

Nadine 2 years ago

With the kids at 31 this all seems to ring true, its sad that half the marriages of my friends that took place in my twenties are over or ending, My first pregnancy at 27 gave me white hairs and I have only lost one loved one to cancer, makes me wonder what the world will look like in 8 years…

Billy Margie Colvin 2 years ago

Honey, stay in your thirties for awhile longer. Next year just be thirty-ten, and the next be thirty-eleven. Blow folks mind, they will think you have totally lost it. I for one turned sixty-twelve this year. Decided I am not going to leave the sixties. Just too much fun. You retire, have bunches of grand kids get discounts and a lot of good stuff. Enjoy each phase you go through and hang on to the best as long as you can.

monica 2 years ago

pretty awesome. makes me want to do this is 40ish. ;o) happy new year!

Dawn 2 years ago

Great article, I’m 39 as well and could relate to just about everything you said.

Shannon Celebi 2 years ago

After reading this post (and yes, crying a little), I immediately tried to Google “what Jake Ryan looks like now” to no avail. I guess some daydreams are better left as daydreams. Sigh. Thanks for such an insightful post and for making me remember that 39 really isn’t that old at all!

Amy 2 years ago

Awesome, turned 40 in September and was thrilled ~ it means I’m still alive! Looking forward to the next 40! I thought I was the only one who looked in the mirror and delusions and all still saw myself at 18 :) Happy New Year!

Jessica Smock 2 years ago

Oh, gosh, my friend, this brought tears to my eyes. You captured this moment so perfectly. I turned 39 in August. I was just saying to my husband this morning that I cannot believe that this is the year — 2014 — when I will turn 40. It seems impossible, surreal. My favorite show as a kid was “thirtysomething” and I saw a bit of it recently, and I couldn’t believe how YOUNG everyone seemed.

Cattibrie 2 years ago

Wow. Thanks for putting into words how I have been feeling these past few months. 40 is in 12 days for me now. I don’t know why it feels like such a big milestone but it really does seem like one. Like suddenly I should have it all together. Maybe I will stay at 39.

Allison Slater Tate 2 years ago

Thanks. I am actually halfway through 39… it’s taken me this long to write about it. I’m slow now. 😉

Allison Slater Tate 2 years ago

What a nice thing to say! Thank you!

Allison Slater Tate 2 years ago

Tracy, you crack me up. Why do you think I wrote about it? I know I’ll forget!

Frankie Laursen 2 years ago

But in a good way?

Frankie Laursen 2 years ago

Wow, these descriptions are spot-on. I just turned 40 a few weeks ago, and I’m still struggling with not wanting to be perfect. I keep thinking that I won’t really be able to peacefully, calmly accept life as it is until I’m 80 years old.

Happy birthday and Happy New Year!

Jeannie Chiasson 2 years ago

Other than the having kids part I can sympathize with a lot of this at 32.

tracy@sellabitmum 2 years ago

At 45 I now barely remember 39. Oy.

Jean 2 years ago

If the people in charge now are the ones who can craft insightful pieces like this, well… I’m pretty happy with that.

Patricia Ashton Cornute 2 years ago

Kudos brave 39 year old!

julie k 2 years ago

Spot on, hit the nail on the head! !! Can’t decide whether to laugh, cry, or go put on some yoga pants blare some Motley Crue and eat ice cream!

Stephanie 2 years ago

This is so scarily true. I am right now battling with putting kids in preschool vs. making sure we’ve chosen the right retirement options. People do die, and most activities aren’t worth the risk. It’s all crazy. Happy Birthday, and may you have few debilitating hangovers.