Yesterday was my birthday; I am thirty-eight years old. Writing it down, it doesn't seem like I am referring to myself. Thirty-eight sounds so serious, so established and set. And I don't see myself in those terms. I don't imagine myself in my twenties either, and I am very glad to have moved beyond that. But thirty-eight? I'm not sure yet what I think about that number. Yes, it is close to forty, but my perspective on turning forty has never been conventional.
I have waited all my life to turn forty. I eagerly anticipate the big 4-0. I have long believed that a woman truly becomes beautiful at forty: there's wisdom in her eyes, a touch of hollowness in her cheeks and at the base of her throat, gentle lines on her face from experiences and living. A forty year old woman knows what she is about, no more trying to figure out what she is supposed to be. A forty year old woman knows her mind, is settled into the unique person she is, and makes no apologies for it. I could go on and on about what I think forty signifies for a woman... I won't wear a diamond until I turn forty (my engagement ring is a tanzanite, which is a rare purplish-blue stone); I feel the need to be more established before I wear such a weighty jewel.
In light of my thoughts on forty, I suppose that thirty-eight and thirty-nine signify the last stages of the metamorphosis period. Even the recent changes in my life reveal this to be true: adapting to a natural program to "shed my old skin." I thank You, Lord, for continually guiding my steps in this journey, for showing me how to let go of the past, giving me deeper understanding, and bringing me this far and beyond. Above all, be glorified in this butterfly!