Today is my 45th birthday, so it seems fitting to feature my thoughts and sentiments on being fierce, fearless, fabulous, forty!
Name and age:
Sharon and today I am 45 years old.
Blog address and social media handles
Blog – you’re on it….
Facebook: The Blessed Barrenness
How do you feel now that you’re in your forties?
Pretty much the same as I did in my twenties and thirties, I don’t feel old, or middle aged, I still feel like the same person, mostly I just like myself a lot more than I used to. I was actually excited to turn forty. It was like a turning point in my life, it’s hard to explain, but it really did, on some levels, feel like a re-birth. I went through a period of about a year after turning forty, of self discovery, of self reflection and in so many ways, it felt like I truly “found” myself, my authentic self through that journey.
What has been your greatest achievement since turning forty?
There have been a few. Becoming a mother for the second time at 41 was amazing. On some levels it feels special, it’s a little out of the ordinary and I don’t ever want to remembered for being ordinary. Being an older mom is a privilege because it’s just different, I am different to who I was in my 20’s and 30’s.
Winning the African Blogger Award for Best Parenting Blog in 2015 was a highlight for me to, mostly because it was so unexpected and so many things changed after that.
Getting back on the horse, literally, and rediscovering my love of horses and horse riding.
Now, as a mature woman, do you have any regrets? Anything you wish you could go back and do differently?
Not really. All my life experiences, including the bad ones have helped to mould and shape me into the person today. There were some tough things to get through and at the time I probably regretted them but I don’t anymore.
Looking back, I’ve survived an abusive first marriage, gotten divorced at 26, moved across the country, lived in another country, been through 7 years of infertility and recurrent pregnancy loss and now with hind sight, even though those things were tough, I’m proud of myself for getting through them and I’m proud of the woman they made me. I’m proud of my strength, emotional and psychical and especially my strength of character.
If you could talk to your 20 or 30 something self, what would be one piece of advice you’d give yourself.
In my twenties, I was so focused on relationships and on being in relationships, especially bad ones, so with hindsight, I’d love to tell myself that I was worth more, that I was worthy of love and that I didn’t need to tolerate or put up with a lot of the shitty relationships I put myself through in my twenties.
The bulk of my thirties were spent struggling with infertility. It was an extremely hard time, definitely my toughest life challenge and if I could talk to my 30 year old self, I would love to whisper to her that everything is going to be ok in the end, if it’s not ok, it’s not the end. During my 30’s and that struggle, I became extremely hopeless and trapped in my situation and it saddens me today that so much of my 30’s were spent struggling.
What has been one/some of the biggest changes you’ve noticed within yourself since turning forty?
My ability to laugh at myself and not take myself too seriously. This has been a character building process and one that I have loved. There’s so much freedom that comes with being able to laugh at yourself, far less worry needs to go into what other people are thinking. I take what I do extremely seriously, but I don’t take myself especially seriously.
My tolerance for pettiness and drama is also extremely low and my friendships are extremely important to me, but never high maintenance.
What do you still hope to achieve in your forties?
I’d love to work for myself. I’m really not sure how or what, but I’d love to do something I’m passionate about but that would allow me more freedom and flexibility with my time. I’d love to do a photography course, that’s a hobby that has developed over the past year. I love taking photos and I’d love to be better at it.
What advice would you give to women who are fearful about approaching forty?
Don’t be fearful. It’s quite possibly been the most empowering time of my life so far. I’m more confident than ever before and I think that comes with maturity too, I’m able to say what I want and mean what I say. Liking myself and respecting myself has liberated me in so many ways. Also, there’s an element of zero *&^%s to give and there is so much freedom in that. People’s opinions of me mean far less to me these days than they did in my twenties and thirties.
What is one of societies stereotypes about women in their forties that you wish you could change?
That we’re all boring, irrelevant, over the hill, mom-jean wearing soccer moms. That couldn’t be further from the truth. I’m sick and tired of reading articles about how to dress for my age. I’m sick and tired of society voicing opinions on how I should behave, dress and conduct myself now that I’m in my forties. I’m 45 and I’ll do as I damn well please.
Any parting thoughts or comments?
My forties have been the best decade of my life so far. I no longer feel I need to prove anything to anyone. I am who I am. Take it or leave it. Like me or don’t like me. I’m fierce. I’m fabulous. I’m 45!
Are you fierce, fearless, fabulous and in your forties? Would you like to be featured in this series? Then drop me an email!