While I was in my 20s and 30s, many older lady friends of mine would tell me how great their 40s are/were.
- “Best years of my life!”
- “I felt like I finally really came into my own.”
- “In my 40s, I finally stopped caring what other people thought.”
- “My sex drive went through the roof! My husband didn’t know what hit him!”
Well here’s my response to all that rosy-eyed bullshit:
- The first one is a blatant LIE.
- Can’t really relate to #2. See the Meryl Streep pic above.
- Really? It took you until your 40s to stop giving a shit about random people?!?!?
- Yeah, well, *I’m* the 18-year-old male in my marriage, so these days my husband is afraid to bend over for soap.
So aside from ALLLLLL that ridiculous bullshit, there are just so MANY things I hate about my 40s. In no particular order:
1. Hair. Everywhere. In places it had never been before.
OK, confession: I am very fortunate when it comes to body hair. I am a real blonde. The carpet matches the drapes. (Although yes, I get my hair done to lighten it up and hide the GREY). I have always had very little body hair. I shave my legs about 3 times a year. So, there’s that.
But chin whiskers?!?! Seriously, what the fuck?!
And suddenly my bikini area requires FAR more attention than it ever did before. It’s like my pubes are suddenly curious what’s down further on my thighs.
And my personal favorite: nipple hairs. NIPPLE. HAIRS. And those bitches are BLACK. Suddenly my body can make black hair?!? When did that start to happen?
Oh, and yeah, I had to pluck a hair out of my nose a few months ago. I cried. Because it hurt, and because I realized it was yet ANOTHER thing I was going to have to keep tabs on.
2. My upper arms.
Oh it’s not just the bingo wings, my friends. It’s the DIMPLING. I have looked around at my other reasonably-fit friends, and I realized it’s almost inevitable. Sure, I have some friends who still look amazing. But I have other friends who looked FABULOUS… until they hit 40. For some of us, no matter how much we work out, no matter what yummy food we deprive ourselves of, our muscles just seemed to get tired and start to dangle off our arms. And the skin just sort of gives up and gets all dimply… I can’t go on. It’s just too depressing.
3. Boobs trying to escape to the Southern Hemisphere.
We don’t really need to go here, do we? I avoid going braless around the house anymore because, inevitably, I seem to painfully smash/clip/almost rip off my nipple on something… something that I thought was probably belly-button height, but that is just slightly — ever so slightly — higher than that.
4. Saggy knee-skin.
I do yoga pretty regularly. I have for about 15 years. These days, if I’m not wearing long enough pants, I have to close my eyes during Downward Dog. It’s just… it’s too demoralizing. Staring at the wrinkly skin gathering above my knee caps is the opposite of relaxing and soothing. I saw a picture of Elle McPherson in a bikini when she was in her late 40s. She looked fucking AMAZE-BALLS… and the skin above her knees sagged. Oh yeah. I enjoyed it. More than a little.
5. My INSANE Uterus.
These days, I’m either menstruating or ovulating. It’s like my uterus goes, “What? No baby? CLEAN HER OUT. Let’s go again!” So instead of the length of my cycle stretching out, and getting to enjoy longer respites between having my uterus try to kill me by bleeding me out, I now get to enjoy Aunt Flow’s visits every. three. weeks. FUCK THIS SHIT.
And Aunt Flow is not polite. Oh GOD no. No, she feels the need to bleed me like the pigs they bled to coat Carrie. I’m getting to the point where I’m considering carrying Depends around in my purse.
(Thank god my mom — a retired nurse — taught me that hydrogen peroxide gets out blood. Otherwise, I’d be buying sheets, underwear and pants by the dozen.)
Oh… and ovulating. Oh my sweet ovaries. What have I EVER done to you? My ovaries seem to have joined in the campaign to destroy me from within. Over the years, I often felt myself ovulate. It was only occasionally unpleasant. But these days? Christ, it feels like some telekinetic demon is trying to twist my Fallopian tubes into a knot. And, just for good measure, I frequently ovulate on both sides. Because Mother Fucking Nature is going, “Go go go!! Drop those eggs!! Use ‘em or lose ‘em!”
Why does it suddenly hurt so much, you ask? Well, Margaret, every month when you ovulate, you basically develop a cyst on the ovary, then the cyst pops and releases the egg. Apparently, this leaves a little scar tissue behind. At my advanced age of 43, after 30 years of ovulating, there is, presumably, a fuckload of scar tissue on my ovaries, and my eggs have to claw their way free.
So these days, I’m hornier than I have EVER been… and my uterus is thwarting me one out of every three weeks. That BITCH.
6. My metabolism now defies the laws of physics.
When you burn more calories than you take in, you lose weight, right? I mean, it’s simple physics.
NOT AFTER 40. My body put on 15 – 25 pounds (I fluctuate) in my late 30s, for no apparent reason, and it is holding on the added weight with a death grip. I’ve tried low-carb, vegan, Paleo, and good old-fashioned low-calorie diets. NOTHING has worked. Nothing. I trained for and ran a half-marathon on my 39th birthday. BUPKUS. I went back to weights and cardio. Nada. Tried interval workouts. ZILCH. I still have this spare tire… along with chin and nipple hairs, saggy knees, belly-button-level nipples and ladyparts that are plotting my ultimate destruction.
Oh yeah. I love my 40s. Best years of my fucking life.