Going on this cruise will be the first time I am spending my birthday without my husband and children in 18 years. It's a celebration for me, for surviving myself and my younger years and not self-destructing like my Father before me. The men on my Father's side are split down the middle between Saints and Sinners. My father lived a hard fast life and it cost him his life at 41, I am the last of his children to out live him, His goal was to outlive he Father and he did, his Father died at 31 leaving 7 young children behind, so I think my Father probably breathed a sigh of relief when his 32 year came around, just like I will be doing in my 42 birthday in a few days.
Some times life goes in cycles without even anyone noticing, but I tend to take notice of these. My grandmother (Father's Mother) said I am the most like him out of all his children, I have all of his good traits and left a lot of his bad traits behind in my youth. My brother wasn't sure of living longer then "the old man" as my brother refers to my Father, but dying at 41 is no where near an old man. I was 16 at the time of his death and 41 did seem ancient to me, but funny how now that I am 41, I don't think of it as ancient anymore. I DO feel the years though, I no longer feel the need to party till the sun comes up and a quiet night at home sounds like time well spent now.
I now watch my older 2 children go through the rigors of young adulthood with hardly any sleep and no desire to spend quality time at home with their family (tongue in cheek on that one) and I don't feel any jealousy about their youth and energy. I often think of people who go through mid life crisis is to tie up some loose ends on things they wish they had the opportunity to do when they were younger, I don't think I'll ever have a mid life crisis......I got everything out in my youth and I'm lucky to have survived most of it with only a few regrets and a few bad decisions... I made peace with myself a long time ago.
I feel your 40's is a time to really celebrate life.......I am wiser, more conscious of others and their life experiences and I appreciate what they are willing to share with me, I am in good health, I have a loving family and I am financially stable, what's not to celebrate? I no longer repeat mistakes of my youth, I know WHO I am and I no longer second guess myself...I will also be leaving my fear of being 41 and wondering and waiting for my demise in the past.......hoping to have at least 41 more years of participating in life and taking nothing for grant it.