My oldest child is forty tomorrow! What a milestone! She's going to Iceland and Denmark with friends for 10 days to celebrate. What a far cry from my fortieth birthday. I am so happy for her. Here is a poem I wrote for her today:
To My Daughter on Turning Forty:
we drove in the car that soon would no longer work for us
to the little hospital outside of london where the nun/nurses
mr. roberts, my doctor from harley street, would only be there
if there were complications and there were and he
was brilliant, delivering your beautiful baby self into
forty is not so old these days. in my youth my aunts
started wearing granny shoes and shapeless dresses
at forty and never dyed their hair.
gray hair was ubiquitous on women then, we never
stared at the courage of a woman walking through life
with her white hair—it was expected.
it was expected that growing old meant letting go
of “sexy,” wearing ugly clothes and forgetting
your young dreams, whatever they were.
my mother stayed stylish and hot until the day she died.
you will too.
her dreams were tarnished when she died.
yours won’t be.
age is not “you’re as old as you feel,” it is feeling what you feel
and the hell with what people think!
it’s being present in the moment no matter how great or awful the moment
my daughter, you are beautiful, brilliant, proud and free, filled with
creative life and vitality and at forty you are just beginning
a wonderful moment in your life’s journey!
may forty be the beginning of everything you’ve ever dreamed.
love from your proud Mother