483 Words on Turning 45

Forty-five is in the middle. It’s halfway to ninety. It’s twice as long as twenty-two and a half. Forty-five is nine away from fifty-four. 

Forty-five sees the years behind as instructive, beautiful, compost, and a solid foundation. It sees the years ahead as golden, elegant, rich, and a tall tower. 

Forty-five is friends who not only understand the assignment, but they get the extra credit. 102% friends. 

Forty-five is lashes and nails, butter and letterpress. It’s love and beauty, luxury and dreams. 

Forty-five is abundance and humor, healing, and hope. 

Forty-five is looking forward and backward but living here and now. 

Forty-five is Kirkland brand everything. 

Forty-five is squishy and a little wrinkly; it’s sturdy and a little creaky. 

Forty-five is not taking anything for granted. 

Forty-five is more than a few misunderstandings, broken hearts, scars and funerals. 

Forty-five is resilient and bounces back. 

Forty-five wishes you were here. 

Forty-five is middle school boys who call you “mother” because “it’s fancy, like England.” They throw their heads back and laugh. The little one tries to play along but she keeps messing it up.“This cereal makes chocolate milk, mama. I mean, mother.” 

Forty-five is a husband in a hot pink polo, handsome as ever. “The old ladies at the gym are checking me out, you know,” he warns. “Why are you laughing? You don’t think it’s true?” 

“Oh, I know it’s true. That’s why I’m laughing. I’m the lucky one.”   

Forty-five is admiring those steam cleaners and drooling over cleaning tik toks where people showcase the two  dishwashers in their kitchen. What is that even like? All the dishes done at the same time? What is this sorcery? Must investigate.

Forty-five is having written hundreds of thousands of words.  

Forty-five is how old you were when I met you all those years ago. And you older friend? I didn’t know you when you were 45, but I think I have an idea of what you were like. I like you better now. And you young one? I’m looking forward to when you are forty-five. It’s going to be great. 

Forty-five is a bit of reshuffling and reorganizing. It’s shedding some old skins living into new ones. It’s curating and selecting. 

Forty-five knows good advice when she sees it. 

Forty-five puts the “You look amazing” decal on the mirror to remind everyone who looks in it, including her.  

Forty-five is the good stationery. 

Forty-five cries when the coffee pot breaks, but not because she can’t buy a new one and have it delivered before 5pm the same day, because she can and does. 

Forty-five feels like forty was supposed to be, but knows it’s okay to be a late bloomer sometimes. Everything grows at its own pace. 

Forty-five takes responsibility for its own choices and accepts the consequences, tough as some of them are. 

Forty-five knows that life is long and life is short.

#WritersWrite and I write almost every day. I sometimes share my thoughts publicly in this series called “500 Words or Less” This practice allows me to explore a variety of different topics in a restrained/contained way and learn what resonates with people. I wrote it, not AI. If you share, please give proper credit. © Traci Smith, 2023. All Rights Reserved.

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